Register No. \ t
ARGUMENT, A PRIORI,
BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES.
IcUprint of tijc Sixti) or ^cists
piSTCi! ds A/og Tasai /AIV ayuiat
6 dnQgui -ruv aycjgal, /i<rrj5
Ka/ XVASKST crccn-)) ^ A/oj
ToD ya^> xa/ yscoj iffj&iv.
Him we men never pass over
Unmentioned. All streets are full of God,
And all meeting-places of men ; the sea is also full,
And harljours too ; and in all places we all yearn for God,
For His offspring also are we.
THE LATE MR. HONYMAN GILLESPIE.
NT. A PRI01
Bl INO AND THE ATTRIBUTES
THE LORD GOD,
ABSOLUTE ONE, AND FIRST CAUSE.
WIT. LI AM HOXYMAN GILLESPIE,
OF TOIiMANKllIU, ;
K.R.O.S. ; K.7..S. , K.G.S.I.. ; ETC.. KTi\
"THE NECESSARY EX1STKXCK OF O-iD,"
With a Prrj arc j^.-j-imi on Behalf uf :
liv JAMKS l. r f:QT T HA.RT, F.S.A >
E n i N B u R a ii :
REISSUED KOR THK TIIUSTKKS OF .MKS Ho.VVMAN Oli.
T. k T. CLARK, 3s HK..K..K STHKKT.
ARGUMENT, A PRIORI,
BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES
THE LORD GOD,
ABSOLUTE ONE, AND FIRST CAUSE.
WILLIAM HOXYMAN GILLESPIE,
OF TORBAXEHILL ;
F.R.G.S. ; F.Z.S. ; F.G.S.L. ; ETC., ETC.
"THE NECESSARY EXISTENCE OF GOD,"
<Sixth or Theists (BMtion,
With a Preface prepared on Mialf of the Trustees of Mrs. Hontiman Gillespie
l!v JAMES URQUHART, F.S.A. (Scox.).
REISSUED FOR THE TRUSTEES OF MRS. HONVMAN GILLESPIE
T. & T. CLARK, 38 GEORGE STREET.
O 0F.O2! n TO/rVa; rnv xrJa/JMv y.a! Tai-ra rd sv crjrw, o-Jroj
cisai-oS xai yr^ Kveio; i/--de%(*jv, o\tx sv ;//sMro/r7Vo; vao/j xaroixii ,
oufe I/TO ynouv dvdettiTUV OzeaKiiizru.! ffgofffaoftfvos rivo:, a jroc
vast ^ur t v xai TVOJJV xai ra TacT-a g-To/Jjfff n EI/OJ a/ /iaro
i TbH, xaroixsTv SKI KO.V TO T^&Vwcoi/ TTJJ y^g, oe/ tfaj
; xaiodit; xai rd; (>?ot)saiac rr^ xaro/x/ aj avruv
TON 0EON, / a^ay= -v]/7i>.af qffnav O.-JTOV xai tvgoitv, xalroiys OT
MAKPAN AIIO EN02 EKA2TOT HMHN THAPXONTA. EN
ATTI1 PAP XHMKN KAI KINOTME0A KAI E2MEN- wg xa/
T/I/EJ rww xa() 0/xag cro/^rwi j/gjjxaff/*
ToD yae xa/ ysvof ffffjbiv.
Two; o\/v -j-TdgyMTSS TOT 0EOT, oix Otpt
7) ayu*w j X/tfw, ^agay/tar/ rs^v/jc xa/
TO 0EION f/ r va< o,ao/of. ST. PAUL.
The God who made the earth and all things that are in it, He, being
Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands,
neither is He served \ty the hands of men, [as if] needing anything,
Himself giving to all, life, and breath, and all things ; and He made of one
[blood] every nation of men, to dwell upon all the face of the earth, having
determined [their] appointed times, and the bounds of their habitation ;
that they should seek God, if haply they might feel after Him, and find
[Him], though He is not far from each one of us, for in Him we live, and
move and have our being as even some of your own poets have said,
" For His offspring also are we."
Being, then, the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the God
head is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, in graven form [the outcome] of
art and device of man.
PREFACE ON BEHALF OF THE TRUSTEES OF MRS. HONYMAN
GILLESPIE. ...... Page vii
SYNOPSIS OF THE ARGUMENT. ..... xxv
THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI. . 1
THE BEING, AND THE NATURAL MODES. . . .1
THE INTELLECTUAL ATTRIBUTES. . 4G
THE MORAL ATTRIBUTES. . . 56
SUB-DIVISION I. The Transitional Attributes. . . f>6
SUB-DIVISION II. The Relative Attributes. . . 63
THE COMPLEX OR COMPOUND ATTRIBUTES. . .173
THE TRANSCENDENT EXCELLENCIES. . . . 223
THE GENERAL SCHOLIUM. . 247
PREFACE TO SIXTH EDITION. ... . 263
PREFACE TO FIFTH EDITION. 284
BRIEF SKETCH OF THE LIFE AND WORKS
OF THE AUTHOR.
MRS. HONYMAN GILLESPIE, who died iii 1886,
by her Trust-Disposition and Settlement directed
her Trustees, as soon as conveniently might be
after fulfilling certain purposes of the Trust (which
included munificent benefactions, a continuance
of like generous acts in her lifetime), to apply a
specific sum, which formed a considerable part of
her estate, for the purpose generally of extending
the circulation of the Works of the Author, her
late husband, " so as to keep his memory and
The Trustees, at a meeting in December, 1905,
decided that the time had arrived when this pro
vision could be proceeded with, and resolved to
commence carrying it into execution by at once
reprinting " The Argument, a priori, for the
Being and the Attributes " (Theists Edition),
viii PREFATORY OBSERVATIONS, WITH A
Mr. Gillespic s latest and most important
work, leaving the others to be taken up at such
time and in such order and form as the Trustees
shall deem advisable.
Besides stating the circumstances under which
the fresh issue is placed before a thoughtful public,
the Trustees requested one of their number to
prepare a suitable Preface.
In accepting the responsibility, the writer has
kept before him the fact that his work is not to
enter into episodes of Mr. Gillespie s family history,
details of his habits, his domestic life or his friend
ships, or to give an Appreciation of his life ; but
to endeavour to convey, as accurately as may be,
an impression of his character as received, partly
through reading his written statements, partly by
considering his known actions, and partly from
opinions expressed by those still alive who knew
him personally. Neither is it the writer s pro
vince to enter into the merits of Mr. Gillespie s
various books, but to make such references to
them as will indicate his teaching. An effort
has been made to obtain from likely sources all
information that would help in preparing this
To the attentive reader of any important book,
the motive which called it forth, the circumstances
under which it was written, and the character and
environment of the author are always of interest.
SKKTCH OF THE AUTHOR S LIFE AND WORK. ix
The universal testimony to the great, almost
unique, value of "The Argument, a priori"
justifies the belief that any such information
regarding Mr. Gillespie s Life and Works will be
William Gillespie (afterwards named William
Honymau Gillespie) was born at Glasgow in 1808.
His father was Richard Gillespie, of South Wood-
side, Renfrewshire, a descendant of the Gillespies of
Ballemore in Cowal, Argyllshire. On both sides of
the house Mr. Gillespie traced his lineage from the
Scottish nobility, and on one with a temperament
like his, this fact would probably have influence,
inspiring him with lofty aspirations, and strengthen
ing him in habits of self-respect and high moral
Educated at the High School and University of
Glasgow, he afterwards followed the profession of
the law. At the University, where he matriculated
in 1826, his mind showed a bias towards Logic and
Natural Philosophy, and in the former subject he
became a prizeman. The then Lord Rector was
the distinguished Lord Brougham, and in after
years they were on terms of scholarly friendship. In
memory of her husband Mrs. Gillespie in 1876
endowed a Lectureship in Geology in Glasgow
University, to be called the Honyman Gillespie
Great results often spring from small beginnings.
x PREFATORY OBSERVATIONS, WITH A
Naturally reverential, Mr. Gillespie accepted theo
logical doctrines without much inquiry, until one
day, in his twenty-first year, when passing along
the streets of Glasgow, he was attracted by a book
seller s shop- window wherein a superior edition of
Hume s philosophical works was exposed for sale.
A ready purchaser, he soon became a constant
reader of the Dialogues. They awakened his mind,
but only to a perturbed condition, and aroused a
spirit of inquiry. Becoming possessed shortly
afterwards of a copy of Dr. Samuel Clarke s
Demonstration of the Being and Attributes of
God, his mind, through its perusal, soared to
lofty conceptions. The study of these two
authors was the turning-point in his life. He
was convinced of the existence of God ; but,
not satisfied with Clarke s argument, he began a
scientific process of independent inquiry. It
seemed to him that the argument a posteriori was
defective, and that what had been written from the
a priori position was unsatisfactory. He gradually
concentrated his attention on what he believed to
be the best methods of proof. Finally adopting a
method never before attempted, he started from the
propositions, acknowledged by Atheists and Theists
alike, that there is Infinity of Extension and Infinity
Generally, his investigation proceeded on an ex
amination of the a posteriori arguments, an inquiry
SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR S LIFE AND WORK. xi
into the a priori arguments as demonstrated up
to that time, a conviction that the a priori method
should be based on intuition and not obtained
through the senses, and a series of propositions
that God exists and is knowable. Encouraged at
college by the success of a Thesis on these lines
which drew from his Professor much praise, he
took pride in his effort, and cherished it. After
his demonstration of the character of God, he
discovered that his delineation was in accordance
with the Divine Revelation made to the inspired
Prophets of old.
Joining the lending debating societies of the day,
Mr. Gillespie devoted himself to contributing papers
on theological discussions, particularly in regard to
questions of infidelity. He soon was recognised
as an enthusiastic controversialist of the first rank,
and easily took his place in public as an accredited
opponent of Atheism. His hands became full, for
he had many opponents, infidel notions being
popular and rampant at the time.
At an early date he began to recognise that the
work of his life was to present an unassailable
argument that God is. He was convinced that the
weakness of the position of the Theists was that,
up to that time, they had not proved their case
by an accurate demonstration.
In later years he frankly gives his reasons for so
dedicating his life, when he refers to " his duty in
PREFATORY OBSERVATIONS, WITH A
reference to the Master s work to be done in the
world at this present time," adding " Let no man,
therefore, suppose that the Editor embarked in his
undertaking hoping for the thanks of the wise in
science or the mighty in divinity. He works with
other sort of reward in view than is obtainable
from the savants of either kind. And, if the
Absolute Disposer of all events shall continue,
through the medium of the same human instru-
mentality, to awaken to the consciousness of the
better light from Heaven, now one here, now one
there each one of whom, with his big brain, is
sure to become a centre of ideas in this huge, living
panorama the worker has the reward he coveted."
His great book assumed its present shape by a
process of evolution, although the full idea was long
in the author s mind. As each division appeared,
he awaited its criticism, continued to test the
strength of his efforts, compared its value with that
of others on the same and kindred subjects, recon
sidered, readjusted, and built upon it, until, in
majestic grandeur and solemnity, there developed,
after years of thought, reason, and patient applica
tion, his ideal of the finished Argument, a priori,
which he claimed to be the end of the Theistic
controversy. The first part appears to have been
presented to the public in 1833. It relates to (1)
the Being and the Natural Modes, and (2) to the
Intellectual Attributes, and forms the groundwork
SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR S LIFE AND WORK. xiii
on which the rest is based. A learned critic de
scribed the treatise as " The hardest, closest, most
irrefragable argument we have seen for many a day,
and, so far as we have discovered, without a single
weak point." After its trial (during which a Defence
was published in 1840), at protracted intervals,
and amid much anxiety, further parts were issued :
the Propositions relating to the Happiness and the
Goodness or the transitional Moral Attributes in
1843; the relative Moral Attributes in 1865,
described in "Laws of Thought," 1868, as "A
course of severe reasoning as strict, indeed, as
that of Euclid " ; and the Complex or Compound
Moral Attributes in 1870. These were all published
together in that same year as the fifth edition, and
have been described as the book suited to meet the
arguments of Atheists. Thereafter he proceeded to
work out to completion his great plan, by writing
the Transcendent Excellencies, which, added to the
fifth volume, was published in 1872 as the Sixth
Edition, or Theists Edition. The latter division,
which exhibits a high tone of moral and religious
feeling, is suited to the appreciation of the Believer.
It contains, further, a general Scholium applicable
to each division of the Demonstration.
Mr. Gillespie more than once gave a reason for
the difference of style in the latter part of his book,
the change having been objected to by several
critics. He says, "The first part might be repre-
xiv PREFATORY OBSERVATIONS, WITH A
sen ted by the fixed skeleton generally ; the other
portion being likened unto the flesh and blood, and
all the outward adornments of the structure, as a
living organism, in all the glow of high health and
beauty. . . . The earlier Scholia concern the Being
whose existence is in course of being proved ; while
the later Scholia have much to do with Man and
his concerns. . . . The truth about the Being of
beings, as He is in Himself, is simple, and capable
of being clearly stated in few words. But with Man s
entrance on the stage, a complicated and confused
state of affairs is superinduced, and, by comparison,
a deluge of words becomes necessary, and requires
to be excused."
Writing in regard to this completed work, he
says, "If this our demonstration be, as it is
commonly admitted by its students to be, an
impregnable, logical construction : if it be, in
truth, a demonstration equal to a mathematical
certainty (as it is confidently declared to be),
mark what follows." He then proceeds to deal
with those who desire to refute the existence
of a Holy Lord God, and with those who will
not concede that Nature herself had an actual
commencement, being created in the thoughts of
God. Proceeding, he says, " The course of the
reasonings is duly completed, so that there is now
existent a finished performance, wanting nothing
and coming to its proper and natural ending. . . .
SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR S LIFE AND WORK. xv
While the ages roll on this argument will exist,
for it is founded upon a rock which cannot be
moved." In after years, he writes, " A whole
generation of mortal men has passed away since
I brought out the original edition of a work
professing to demonstrate the existence of a God.
During all these years the Atheists of this Island
have been endeavouring to find an actual flaw
in my demonstration, but in vain. Mr. Bradlaugh
and those who simultaneously attacked the demon
stration went to loggerheads with each other
about the really weak spot, charging each other
with signal failure in not having properly selected
fit and proper places to be assailed."
Some of Mr. Gillespie s critics, besides making
many other objections to his book, have complained
that he has gone outside his province in his
Scholia in regard to the finality of punishment
in Hell, which implies that the .soul of unregenerate
Man is not immortal, and in regard to the sexual
nature of God. On the other hand, others have
complained that he has not demonstrated the exist
ence of evil, the value of prayer, the forgiveness of
sin, the Incarnation and the Trinity !
Mr. Gillespie, in 1834, married Miss Elizabeth
Honyman, daughter of Sir Richard Honyman,
Bart., and heiress of entail of the estate of
Torbanehill, Linlithgowshire. She succeeded to
xvi PREFATORY OBSERVATIONS, WITH A
the estate in 1842. Despite much personal atten
tion given, for many years afterwards, to matters
connected with the estate and with litigation in
which he had become involved, two of the cases
being carried to the House of Lords, Mr. Gillespie,
who had now retired from his professional duties,
devoted all the time at his command to his life s
In 1840 he published the first edition of "The
Examination," which, with other treatises, ulti
mately appeared in one volume in 1843, and again
in 1863, and in 18G5 under the title of "The
Necessary Existence of God." The author, speak-
ino- of the last edition, mentions that the corisecu-
tive treatises given there may, not without reason,
be held to constitute an entire, compact body
of information respecting the a priori method.
Really the predecessor of the Fifth Edition of the
Argument, it consists of an inquiry into the
defects of the a posteriori arguments, reviews
of Demonstrations by Locke and others, an
Examination of " The Refutation of the Argument,
a priori" and other Papers.
:< The Truth of the Evangelical History of our
Lord Jesus Christ proved in opposition to Dr.
Strauss, the chief of modern disbelievers in Revela
tion," was issued in 1856. This book only pro
ceeded to a certain stage, and, after Mr. Gillespie s
death, was reissued by his widow in 1875, under
SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR S LIFE AND WORK, xvii
the appropriate title of " The Distinctive Designs
of the Four Evangelists." These titles explain its
nature. A critic writes, " Mr. Gillespie has done
here against anti-supernaturalism, what, in a pre
ceding and masterly work, he has done against
Absolutely confident in his position, he three
times challenged the champions of infidelity to a
public discussion once in Edinburgh in 1837,
when he was met by an abortive attempt from
the other side, and again in Glasgow in 1838
where, in his opinion, he was faced by a foeman
worthy, who wrote under the -title of " Antitheos,"
and who might be said to have represented the
Atheists of Scotland. A summary of this controversy
appears in "The Necessary Existence." Lastly, in
1867, he challenged Mr. Bnidlaugh, as the accredited
champion of Atheism in this country. The results
are found in a volume published in 1872, entitled
" Atheism or Theism," where Mr. Gillespie claimed
victory on a field from which his foe had withdrawn.
Various lesser works may be mentioned. A
volume of poetry, entitled " The Origin of Evil : a
Celestial Drama," was published anonymously in
1873. A second edition, issued by his widow,
followed in 1875. The leading theme is meant to
be a warning to Atheists. Mr. Gillespie joins with
others in upsetting certain Miltonic theories. His
suggestions are, that evil sprang in the mind and
xviii PREFATORY OBSERVATIONS, WITH A
was therefore, originally, purely intellectual, not
moral ; and that the Devil and his Angels were
not cast into Hell at first but to palaeontological
earth, and were there when man was created.
A trace of playful grimness reveals itself here,
as in some of his other less important writings,
that shows he possessed a fair sense of humour.
A book entitled, "The Theology of Geologists,"
a pamphlet entitled, " On the Proveableness of a
God," another on "The Absurdity of Materialism,"
and a few Brochures, complete the list.
In his later years Mr. Gillespie, naturally
unobtrusive and unostentatious, lived in- com
parative seclusion, principally at Stirling. In
1875 he passed away, and was buried on the
grassy slope of a little knoll in the picturesque
cemetery there, a suitable resting-place, his mother
having been born at Kippen, a village in the
county of Stirling. An imposing monument, with
a suitable inscription, marks the grave. A beauti
ful stained-glass memorial window was placed by
his widow in the Kippen Hall, a public building
which was one of her many benefactions. Equipped
with a valuable library, this Hall was associated
with the memory of Mr. Gillespie s mother, whose
death shortly preceded his, and to whom he was a
devoted son. Stirlingshire can claim many men
of eminence since the days of George Buchanan,
the prince of Scotland s scholars.
SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR S LIFE AND WORK. xix
Although not written by Mr. Gillespie, there
are two works published, the first on his behalf,
and the second on behalf of his widow, which
should be noted. One is a pamphlet entitled, " A
Vindication of the Argument, a priori" by the
Rev. Dr. Adamson, Edinburgh, issued in 1872, arid
the other, " The Historic Aspects of the A Priori
Argument," by Dr. Cazenove, Sub-Dean and Chan
cellor of the Cathedral Church of St. Mary, Edin
burgh. The latter, consisting of four public lectures
delivered in 1884, and published in 1886, was
arranged through the generosity of Mrs. Honyman
Gillespie, who intended them to form the first
series of a Lectureship.
Like all men of strong individuality who
have risen above the commonplaces of life and
dared to take a lead in public questions of con
troversy, Mr. Gillespie had many detractors ; and,
like such others, he correspondingly attached to
himself many warm admirers. In 1860, shortly
after the settlement of the famous Torbanehill
Mineral Case, which began in 1852, and was
described as an arduous and unparalleled contest, he
was presented with an address by many who knew
him intimately as well as by other friends. So
numerous were the subscribers that the signatories
had to be restricted to one hundred of the well-
known names. In reading the address one is
impressed by the unusual number of excellent
xx PREFATORY OBSERVATIONS, WITH A
qualities attributed to him. The subscribers
express their admiration of the ardour, moral
courage, firmness, fortitude, and perseverance, in
combination with prudence and wisdom, with
which he conducted his case. They declare that
he has displayed unshaken confidence in the
Attributes of the Great Supreme as the righteous
moral Governor whose Providence extends not
only to the world as a whole, but particularly to
the affairs of moral agents created after the image
of the Divine Mind, and refer to his firm, unwaver
ing belief and personal confidence in the faithful
ness of God. Such valuable testimony cannot be
lightly considered. Incidentally to this litigation,
which arose out of a lease of coal in the estate, a
large body of scientific and practical evidence was
presented on behalf of the proprietors on the
question as to whether the Torbanehill Mineral, of
extraordinary richness in oil which had been
discovered by the lessees, was a coal or a shale or
sui generis. Mr. Gillespie s intellect predisposed
him towards fundamental problems and stimulated
research along geological lines for the immediate
purpose of the case, a field of enquiry on which
having once entered he felt from time to time
recalled in after life. Among; other recognitions, he
O O 7
was elected a Fellow of various scientific societies.
Mr. Gillespie, who was a man of simple habits,
was highly conscientious, exact, methodical, and of
SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR S LIFE AND WORK. xxi
stern impartiality, unswayed by feelings in the
endeavour to act justly. The protracted nature of
his intense studies produced long periods of abstrac
tion, but those coming in contact with him found him
urbane and considerate. He showed confidence in
his employes and gave personal attention to their
needs. He took an active interest in improving the
cottages of the poor, generously assisted the inmates
in their financial and other difficulties, and visited
the sick. He retained his servants from father
to son. Shy to strangers and clinging to old and
tried friends, those who understood him best liked
him most. Where he trusted he naturally expected
that his interests would be attended to with faith
fulness, intelligence and accuracy. The masculine
qualities of his mind were not always appreciated.
Engrossed with many schemes, some of which were
never completed, his regard to detail, which often
caused much deliberation, threw him open to the
charge of being finical and procrastinating in some
of his methods.
Mr. Gillespie had many difficulties to contend
with in order to reach the daily tenour of his life,
but obstacles only stiffened his character. His
writings reveal him to be a man of faith, of
prayer, of meditation, and of evangelical truth.
His reasoning faculties were more highly developed
than the affections of his heart. He was an
original thinker, of an ingenious, calm, reflective,
xxii PREFATORY OBSERVATIONS, WITH A
and well-exercised mind, whose intellect, so marvel
lously analytic and synthetic, carried him into
cold altitudes of dispassionate reasoning. He
never wavered in his teaching that the exist
ence of God is as demonstrable as that (to
use his own words) the three inside angles of
a triangle are equal to two rectangles. He
never faltered in his writings, for he never
doubted his mission. Opposition to his teaching
braced him to scrutinise more closely every link
of his argument, persevere with his deliberate
pen in a merciless combat with his opponents, and
press forward the claims of what he believed to be
the truth. He invariably replied to all completed
works which sought to demolish his arguments.
As he proceeded with his life s work he saw more
clearly the perfect consummation of the Archetypal
plan, for any mist in his mind gradually dispelled ;
indeed he seemed to attain to what might be called a
naked brain. These characteristics, unconsciously
and gradually made him a man apart and out
of personal sympathy with social life. To add
to his loneliness, Mr. Gillespie had no children to
enrich his nature and brighten his home.
We are often too apt to value a gift by con
siderations of our appreciation of the messenger
who brought it. Curly le (perhaps prophetically
describing himself us portrayed in after years
by Froude) in his essay on Burns writes of
SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR S LIFE AND WORK xxiii
the poet as appointed to hold a great light guid
ing humanity. One gathers that Mr. Gillespie
valued his mission more than himself and gladly
would stand behind his great argument and be
overlooked, holding up the truth he taught to his
fellow beings, if only he thereby convinced them of
the certainty of an Eternal Father.
From the material at the writer s disposal enough
has been extracted to interest and satisfy a serious
reader. There has been an advantage in consider
ing Mr. Gillespie s life and writings at this interval
of time. Circumstances which once assumed pre
ponderance are now forgotten. We are in a better
position, and are enabled with a better balance, to
consider justly the merits.
As the effect of a picture is seen by standing at
a proper distance from it and in a good light, so
now one can view the lineaments of Mr. Gillespie s
character; and, as the effect of a completed structure
of noble proportions can be better judged after the
scaffolding is taken down, and the style of architec
ture defined in bold relief amid the clear light of
day, so now (amid the debris of much that was
ephemeral) one can estimate the value of Mr.
Gillespie s teaching.
13 DANUBE STREET,
SYNOPSIS OF THE ARGUMENT.
THE BEING, AND THE NATURAL MODES.
Infinity of Extension is necessarily existing. Page 1
PROP. II. Infinity of Extension is necessarily indivisible. . 2
Prolegomena. . . . . .2
Demonstration. . . . . .3
Scholium. . ... 4
COROLLARY from Proposition II. Infinity of Ex
tension is necessarily immoveable. . . 4
Prolegomena. . . .4
Demonstration. . . . . .5
Scholium. . . . . .5
III. There is necessarily a Being of Infinity of Extension. 6
IV. The Being of Infinity of Extension is necessarily of
unity and simplicity. . . . .7
Corollary. . . . . . .9
Scholium. . . . . . .10
SUB-PROPOSITION. The Material Universe is Jinitv
in extension. . . . . .10
Postulata. . . . . .10
Demonstration. . . . . .15
Scholium. . . . . . .17
General Scholium as to Extension. . . 20
Sub-Scholium. . . . . 21
PROP. V. There is necessarily but one Being of Infinity of
Expansion. .... Page 22
PROP. I. Infinity of Duration is, necessarily, existing. . . 24
II. Infinity of Duration is, necessarily, indivisible. . 25
Prolegomenon. . . . . .25
Demonstration. . . . . .25
COROLLARY from Proposition II. Infinity of Dura
tion is, necessarily, immoveable. . . .25
Prolegomenon. . . . . .25
Demonstration. . . . . .26
III. There is, necessarily, a Being of Infinity of Duration. . 26
IV. The Being of Infinity of Duration is, necessarily, of
unity and simplicity. . . . . .27
Scholium I. . . . . . .29
Corollary. . . . . . .29
Scholium II. . ., . . .29
SOB-PROPOSITION. The Material Universe is finite
in duration. . . . . .30
Prolegomenon. . . . . .30
Demonstration. . . . . .31
Scholium. . . . . . .33
COROLLARY from Sub-Proposition. Every succes
sion of finitely extended substances is finite in
duration. . . . . . .34
V. There is, necessarily, but one Being of Infinity of
PROP. I. There is, necessarily, a Being of Infinity of Expansion
and Infinity of Duration. . . . Page 38
Scholium. . . . . . .41
II. The Being of Infinity of Expansion and Infinity <>f
Duration is, necessarily, of unity and simplicity. . 43
III. There is, necessarily, but one Being of Infinity of
Expansion and Infinity of Duration. . . .44
Scholium. . . . . . .44
Epilegomenon. . . . . .45
THE INTELLECTUAL ATTRIBUTES.
PROP. The Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion and of
Duration, is, necessarily, Intelligent, and All-knowing.. 46
Prolegomena. .... .46
Demonstration. . . . . .47
Scholium. . . 48
PROP. The Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion and of
Duration, who is All-knowing, is, necessarily, All-
powerful. . . . . . . .4!)
PROP. The Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion and of
Duration, who is All-knowing, and All-powerful, is,
necessarily, entirely Free. . . . .52
Scholium. ... . 54
Epilegomenon . . . . .55
xxviii SYNOPSIS OF
THE MORAL ATTRIBUTES.
THE TRANSITIONAL ATTRIBUTES.
PROP. I. The Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion and
of Duration, who is All-knowing, All-powerful, and
entirely Free, is, necessarily, completely Happy. Page 56
SUB-PROPOSITION. The Simple, Sole, Being of
Infinity of Expansion and of Duration, who is
All-knowing, All-powerful, entirely Free, and
completely Happy, is, necessarily, perfectly Good. 58
Scholium. . . . . . .60
Epilegomenon. ... .63
THE RELATIVE ATTRIBUTES.
SCHOLIA PR^:POSITA. . . . . .63
Scholium I. ... . . 63
Scholium II. . . . . . .65
PROP. II. God is, necessarily, True. . . . 67
Prolegomenon. . . . . .67
Lemma. . . . . . .68
Postulatum. . . . . . .72
Demonstration. . . . . .72
COROLLARY from Proposition II. God, who is True,
is, necessarily, Faithful. . . . .76
Lemma. . . . . . .76
Demonstration. . . 77
THE RELATIVE ATTRIBUTES.
PROP. III. God, who is True, and Faithful, is, necessarily,
inflexibly Just. .... Page 79
Lemma. . . . . . .79
Demonstration. . . . . .82
Scholium I. Man, as a Moral Being inhabiting the
Earth. ...... 90
Scholium II. The indissoluble connection between
Morality and Happiness, and Immorality and
Misery. ... 96
Scholium sub Scholio II. . . . . 106
Scholium III. The Justice of the Future. . 108
I. Shall there be a Future State for Man ? . 110
II. How shall Justice be administered in the
Future State ? . . . .115
ill. Shall Future Punishment be Eternal ? .119
( OROLLARY from Proposition III. God, who is True,
ami Faithful, and inflexibly Just, is, necessarily,
altogether Righteous. .... 134
PROP. IV. God, who is True, and Faithful, and inflexibly Just,
and altogether Righteous, is, necessarily, All-Loving,
yea, Love Itself. . . . .138
Prolegomenon. . . . . .138
Lemma I. . . . . . . 139
Lemma II. . . . . 140
Demonstration. .... 140
PROP. IV. Scholium I. An important difference between Pro
positions II. & III., on one side, and Proposition
IV., on the other. .... Page 150
Scholium II. Other vital differences between
Propositions II. & III., and Proposition IV. . 155
Scholium III. Shall the Rewards of the Good, and
the Punishments of the Evil, be to all Eternity 1 161
Scholium sub Scholio III. .... 168
Epilegomena. ..... 171
THE COMPLEX OR COMPOUND ATTRIBUTES.
SCHOLIUM PR^EPOSITUM. .... 173
PROP. 1. As God, the Lord, is the Best, so He is, necessarily,
the Wisest of Beings. . . . .174
Prolegomena. . . . .174
First Demonstration. .... 176
Scholium after First Demonstration. . . 178
Second Demonstration. . . . .179
Corollary from Second Demonstration. . .180
Scholium after Second Demonstration. . . 181
General Scholium as to Wisdom. . . . 181
Epilegomenon. . . . . .188
PROP. II. God, the Lord, who is the Wisest of Beings, is, neces
sarily, of ineffable Moral Purity. . . . 188
Prolegomena. . . . . .188
Demonstration. ..... 190
Scholium. The Moral Purity, what it fundamen
tally involves, and really consists in. . .193
THE ARGUMENT. xxxi
PROP. III. God. the Lord, who is the Wisest of Beings, and of
ineffable Moral Purity, is, necessarily, the Holiest
One. ..... Page 204
Prolegomena. ..... 204
Demonstration. . . . . .210
Scholium I. The Holiness and Sin not abso
lutely contradictory correlatives. . . 216
Scholium II. The Holiness and never-ceasing
Sin incompatible. .... 218
Scholium III. The negative Moral Purity,
and the positive Holiness, in fundamental
agreement. ..... 219
Epilegomena. ..... 221
THE TRANSCENDENT EXCELLENCIES.
PROF. 1. The Lord God, who is the Holiest One, is, neces
sarily, the Self-Beaiitifid, and the All-Perfect
PROP. II. The Lord God, who is the Self-Beautiful, and the
All-Perfect Being, is, necessarily, the Ever-Blessed
One. . . . . . .239
Prolegomena. ..... 239
Demonstration. ..... 242
THE GENERAL SCHOLIUM. .... 247
Summary of positions in the demonstration. . 248
Application of the Summary of positions in the
demonstration. .... 251
THE PRAYER. 259
ARGUMENT, A PRIORI,
BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES.
THE BEING, AND THE NATURAL MODES.
Infinity of Extension is necessarily existing.
1. Even when the miiid endeavours to remove
from it the idea of Infinity of Extension as really
outwardly existent, it cannot, after all its efforts,
avoid leaving still within it the idea of such infinity.
Let there be ever so much endeavour to displace
this idea, that is, conceive the external Infinity of
Extension non-existent; every one, by a ivtlrx
examination of his own thoughts, will find it is
utterly beyond his power to do so.
2. Now, since, even when we would remove
2 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR L Dlv - L
the notion of Infinity of Extension, as existing,
out of our minds, we cannot but leave the notion
of it behind ; from this, it is manifest, Infinity of
Extension is necessarily existing : For, Every thing
the existence of which we cannot but believe, is
3. To deny, therefore, that Infinity of Exten
sion necessarily exists, is to utter a downright
4. Infinity of Extension is, then, necessarily
Infinity of Extension is necessarily indivisible.
1. To say, Infinity of Extension is necessarily
indivisible, is as much as to say, the parts of
Infinity of Extension are necessarily indivisible
from each other.
2. Indivisible, in this Proposition, means
indivisible either really or mentally: For there
can be no objection to a real, which would not
apply to a mental divisibility ; and a mental
divisibility, we must suppose, would imply an
actual divisibility, of Infinity of Extension.
3. The Proposition, then, is to the effect, that
the parts of Infinity of Extension are necessarily
indivisible from each other really or mentally.
PART I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 3
1. That which is divisible really, may be
divided really : and a thing which is actually
divided from another must have superficies of its
own, every way, and be removed or separated from
that other thing, be it by ever so little a distance.
If any one should say that things, really divided
from each other have not real superficies of their
own, every way ; to be able to believe him, \ve
must first be able to believe this, that a thing can
be, and not be, at the same time, and in the same
place : And if any one should say that things
which are really divided from each other, which
have real superficies of their own every way, can
possibly be conceived as without a certain distance,
however little, being between them ; as this,
it could as soon be believed that, in a good
syllogism of the first figure, the conclusion does not
necessarily follow from the premises. Being really
divided, and being really separated, mean, thus, the
2. Now, divisibility meaning possibility of
separation : As it is an utter contradiction to say.
Infinity of Extension can be separated ; that is, a
part of Infinity of Extension separated, by a certain
distance, from Infinity of Extension ; there remain
ing Infinity of Extension after part of it is taken
away : a the part of Infinity of Extension so removed,
a Prop. I. 2.
4 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
being removed from the remaining parts to these
very same parts ; the part, thus, being at rest while
it is taken away ; a the part so moved away, being
moved away from itself; it still remaining, inas
much as there is necessarily Infinity of Extension ; a
that is, though moved away, being not moved
away : Which could not be, unless it be false, that
whatever is, is, where it is, and when it is. As it
is, thus, an utter contradiction to say Infinity of
Extension can be separated, so it is an utter
contradiction to say it is not indivisible.
$ 3. Infinity of Extension is, then, necessarily
The parts of Infinity of Extension being
necessarily indivisible from each other ; it is a
necessary consequence, that the thing, the parts of
which are divisible from each other, is not Infinity
of Extension ; nor any part of it : part, in the
sense of partial consideration only, for otherwise
Infinity of Extension can have no parts. b
COROLLARY FROM PROPOSITION II.
Infinity of Extension is necessarily immoveable.
1. Infinity of Extension is necessarily immove-
Prop. I. 2. i> Prop. II. Dem. 2.
PART!.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 5
able : This is equal to saying, the parts of Infinity
of Extension are necessarily immoveable among
2. And immoveable, in the Corollary, means
immoveable either really or mentally.
3. The Corollary, therefore, lays down, in
effect, that the parts of Infinity of Extension are
necessarily immoveable among themselves really
1. Motion of parts, that is, the motion of the
parts of a thing as among themselves, supposes,
of necessity, separation of the parts. He who does
not see that motion of parts among themselves
supposes, or presupposes, of necessity, separation
of the parts, need never be expected to see the
force of the dialectical inference, that because every
A is equal to B, therefore some B is equal to A.
And, Infinity of Extension being necessarily
incapable of separation, a is, therefore, necessarily
immoveable, that is, its parts are necessarily
immoveable among themselves.
2. Infinity of Extension is, then, necessarily
The parts of Infinity of Extension being neces
sarily immoveable among themselves ; it is a
necessary consequence, that the thing, the parts of
a Prop. II. Dem. 2.
6 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
which ore moveable among themselves, is not
Infinity of Extension ; nor any part of it : part,
in the sense of partial consideration only, for other
wise Infinity of Extension can have no parts. a
There is necessarily a Being of Infinity of
1. Either, Infinity of Extension subsists, or
(which is at bottom the same thing) w r e conceive
it to subsist, without a support or substratum : or,
it subsists not, or (which is the same thing) we
conceive it not to subsist, without a Support or
2. First, If Infinity of Extension subsist with
out a substratum, then it is a substance. And if
any one should deny, that it is a substance, it so
subsisting ; to prove, beyond contradiction, the
utter absurdity of such denial, we have but to defy
him to show, why Infinity of Extension is not a
substance, so far forth as it can subsist by itself, or
without a substratum.
3. As, therefore, it is a contradiction to deny
that Infinity of Extension exists, b so there is, on
the supposition of its being able to subsist without
a substratum, a substance or being of Infinity of
Extension necessarily existing : Though Infinity of
a Prop. II. Dem. 2. i> Prop. I. 3.
PART I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 7
Extension, and the being of Infinity of Extension
are not different, as standing to each other in the
relation of mode and subject of the mode, but are
4. Secondly, If Infinity of Extension subsist
not without a Substratum, then, it being a con
tradiction to deny there is Infinity of Extension , a it
is a contradiction to deny there is a Substratum to it.
5. Whether or not men will consent to call
this Substratum Substance or Being, is of very
little consequence. For, tis certain that the word
Substance, or Being, has never been employed,
and can never be employed, to stand for any thing
better entitled to the application of the term than
the Substratum of Infinity of Extension. But to
refuse to give such Substratum that name, being
a thing obviously most unreasonable, let us call the
Substratum of Infinity of Extension, by the name
Substance or Being.
6. Then, there is, necessarily, a Being of
Infinity of Extension.
The Being of Infinity of Extension is necessarily
of unity and simplicity.
1. Because Infinity of Extension is necessarily
indivisible, 1 " therefore it is of the truest unity. For
* Prop. I. 3. b Prop. II. Dem. 2.
8 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
to affirm that though it is necessarily indivisible,
even so much as by thought, yet it is not of the
truest unity, is to affirm what is no more intel
ligible than would be the assertion, that a circle,
this being a figure contained by one line, with
every part of that line or circumference equally
distant from a certain point, is not round.
2. And as Infinity of Extension is necessarily
of the truest unity, so it is necessarily of the utmost
simplicity. For what more can be included in
simplicity than is implied in unity caused by a
thins; beino 1 necessarily indivisible, we can have no
o O J
3. And as, on the supposition that Infinity of
Extension subsists by itself, there is necessarily a
being of Infinity of Extension,* so, this supposed,
that being is necessarily of unity and simplicity.
4. If Infinity of Extension subsist not without
a Substratum ; that we cannot, without an express
contradiction, deny, that the Substratum is of the
truest unity, and utmost simplicity, may be most
5. For it is intuitively evident, that the Sub
stratum of Infinity of Extension can be no more
divisible than Infinity of Extension itself. And
if any one should affirm that though Infinity of
Extension is necessarily indivisible, yet that its
Substratum can be considered as divisible, we could
a Prop. III. 3.
PART I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 9
in) more assent to the proposition than we could
believe that a subject can never be truly pre
dicated of itself. And, therefore, as Infinity of
Extension is necessarily indivisible,* so is its
6. And Infinity of Extension being necessarily
of unity and simplicity because necessarily
indivisible, 15 its Substratum is so likewise, for the
7. And as, on the supposition that Infinity
of Extension subsists not without a Substratum,
there is necessarily a Being of Infinity of Exten
sion, so, this supposed, that Being is necessarily
of unity and simplicity.
8. Then, the Being of Infinity of Extension is,
necessarily, of unity and simplicity.
The Substratum of Infinity of Extension being
necessarily indivisible, 1 that is, its parts being
necessarily indivisible from each other : it is a
corollary, that its parts (parts, in the sense of
partial consideration ouly, d ) are necessarily immove-
able among themselves : For the same reason that
the parts of Infinity of Extension arc necessarily
immoveable among themselves, because necessarily
indivisible from each other.
a Prop. II. Dem. 2. : Prop. III. $ 4 & Jj 5.
b Supra, 1 & 2. ll Prop. IV. 5.
10 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
On the whole, therefore, the thing, the parts of
which are divisible from each other, is not the
Substratum of Infinity of Extension, nor any part
of it : And, the thing, the parts of which are
moveable among themselves, is not the Substratum,
nor any part of it : Part, in the sense of partial
consideration only. a
The Material Universe is finite in extension.
1. If, now, it should be alleged, that the
Material Universe is of Infinity of Extension, the
falsity of the allegation may be made to appeal-
most evidently. That is to say, the application of
positions already demonstrated, directed to the fact
of Matter, (in the case of those who shall, or may,
object the fact,) enables the reasoner to make
manifest, by incontestable proof, that the Material
Universe is truly not of Infinity of Extension, but
finite in extension.
2. For, if any one should affirm, that the
Material Universe is truly of Infinity of Extension ;
his affirmation might be made in one or other of
two ways. To wit, either by way of an assertion
!l Prop. IV. 5 .
PART I.I THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 11
grounded on reasons : or, as being an assertion
made without the support of any reason at all.
The allegation, in this latter case, being made
simply because the alleger pleases and for no
better reason, or any other reason whatsoever.
Tis first affirmed, that the Material Universe and
Infinity of Extension are so related to each other,
that this does not exist without that ; and, next,
it is admitted, that the affirm er of the close
relation betwixt those two can assign no reason
for his assertion of the existence of the relation
save his own good pleasure.
3. Now, as to the second of those alternatives,
no more need be said about it. What is arbitrarily
affirmed without any reason, and indeed reasonable
ness, may, much more, be denied with sufficient
4. As to the other member of the alternative,
the position, to wit, that the Material Universe is
of Infinity of Extension, as a position grounded on
reasons, that is, necessary reasons, because, to
speak of reasons other than necessary, were futile
and absurd. De facto, or a posteriori, or mere
empirical, reasons are out of the question in a case
beyond the limits of all possible human experience,
through the medium of sensation. Only reasons
derived from the necessary relations of our ideas
can avail. As to the position in question, we
repeat, as one grounded on d priori reasons, it will
12 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
be found, by that psychological experience which
is here admissible, that no reason can be assigned,
but one ; because, to wit, the Material Universe is,
i.e., must be considered to be, the Substratum of
Infinity of Extension. No other reason whatever,
tis deliberately repeated, can be assigned : none
can be imagined. The Material Universe is, or
rather must be, of Infinity of Extension, by reason
of its being the Substratum of Infinity of Extension :
that, or some position or other, directly resolvable
into that, is the one only reason which can possibly
be advanced, or thought of. Which he who
pleases, may know, or verify by experience : One
may try the question in the interior of his own
mind ; and, should the experimentalist happily
discover some additional reason, let him be sure to
remember other folk, not by any means so
fortunately situated, by making his discovery
5. The Material Universe is of Infinity of
Extension : and the reason is. because the Material
Universe is the Substratum of Infinity of Extension.
Therefore, the proposition which really comes
before us for examination is this, The Material
Universe is the Substratum in question. Yea, the
upholders of the dictum, that the Material Universe
is of Infinity of Extension, will be among the
foremost to maintain that the Material Universe is
that Substratum : since, on any other supposition,
PART I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 13
there would unquestionably be an Extension
besides the extension of Matter; and this is the
very thing which these men are most determinedly
(not to say, madly) set against as a position which
they can by no means endure. In truth, the
supposition of the existence of Extension, yea, of
Infinity of Extension, apart from Matter, or distinct
from the extension of Matter, would render it a
piece of pure idleness, on the part of the supposer,
to hold that Matter is of Infinity of Extension. It
is only to get quit of an extension distinct from
that of Matter that the assertion, Matter is
infinitely extended, is made. Introduce the other
and separate extension, as necessarily existing, and
all reason for holding by the infinite extension of
Matter is gone.
6. The Material Universe is the Substratum
of Infinity of Extension : this, then, is the proposi
tion for examination. And, after due reflection, it
will become evident, as it is in itself incontestable,
that to contend that the Material Universe is the
Substratum of Infinity of Extension, is tantamount
to another contention, the other being this, The
Material Universe is a thorough plenum of Infinity
O L /
of Extension. The proof, too, which will serve to
evidence the unsoundness, and utter falsity, of the
one proposition, would also suffice to demolish
every vestige of the other position.
7. That the Material Universe is the Substratum
H THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
of Infinity of Extension, will, indeed, be maintained
if it be contended, and only if it be contended, that
the Material Universe is a thorough plenum of
Infinity of Extension. This is very evident, as,
bv a thorough plenum of matter, must be meant
a material plenum in which no empty interstice, or
hollow vacuity, (actual or possible, by compres
sion, or otherwise,) can be : the two factors, the
Substratum, to wit, and the plenum, being
perfectly, and at all points indissolubly, coincident.
For, the supposition of a plenum in which there
are, or can be, true vacuities, would be the supposi
tion of no true plenum at all, and would avail
nothing. A plenum (if one could rightly call
it so) with vacuities, or any one vacuum, however
small, could not serve as the Substratum of
Infinity of Extension, in which no vacuum, nor
division of any kind whatever, is conceivable. a
The plenum, then, must be held to be with
out the possibility of any vacuum, when we
speak of a thorough plenum of Infinity of
Extension as being the Substratum of Infinity
of Extension. But, on the other hand, to
contend that the Material Universe is a thorough
plenum which is the equivalent of an absolute,
or completely incompressible, solid of Infinity
of Extension, would be (as has been said) equal
to the affirmation that the Material Universe
a Prop. IV. Schol.
PART I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 15
is, verily, the Substratum of Infinity of Exten
8. Those postulates being thus laid down, the
advance to the demonstration itself may be most
1. If, then, it should be maintained, that the
Material Universe is the Substratum of Infinity of
Extension : (which will be maintained, as is most
evident, if it be contended that the Material
Universe is truly of Infinity of Extension, that is,
is a thorough plenum of Infinity of Extension ;)
to put to the proof, whether or not the Material
Universe can be such Substratum, we have but to
ask, Are the parts of the Material Universe
divisible from each other ? and, Are they moveable
among themselves ? For, if they be so divisible, if
so moveable, then the Material Universe cannot
be the Substratum of Infinity of Extension. a
2. Now 7 , we know, of a certainty, that some
parts of the Material Universe are divisible from
each other; and, as far as we know, every part of
it to which our minds could be directed is as
divisible, as are the parts which we certainly know
are divisible : and this is the conclusion to which,
by the rules of philosophy, we are entitled to
a Schol. under Prop. IV.
16 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
3. Therefore, the Material Universe cannot be
the Substratum of Infinity of Extension.
4. Again, we are certain, that some parts of
the Material Universe are moveable among them
selves ; and, that every part of it to which our
minds could be directed is as moveable, as are the
parts which we certainly know are moveable, is
(here, as in the other case) what we are entitled to
5. Therefore, again, the Material Universe
cannot be the Substratum of Infinity of Exten
6. And, if, because the parts of the Material
Universe are divisible from each other, it is proved
that it is not the Substratum of Infinity of Exten
sion ; then, because the parts of the Material
Universe are divisible from each other, and
moveable among themselves, it is proved, much
more, (if that were possible,) that the Material
Universe is not the Substratum of Infinity of
Extension. It is proved, that the Material
Universe is not the Substratum of Infinity of
Extension ; nor any part thereof, for the Sub
stratum of Infinity of Extension can have no parts
but in the sense of partial consideration : a that is,
that the Material Universe is finite in extension.
For, were it of Infinity of Extension, it would be
the Substratum thereof. But it being not that
a Prop. IV. 5.
PART!.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 17
Substratum : Therefore, it is not of Infinity of
7. The Material Universe, then, is Jinite in
1. It has been manifested, that an infinitely
extended plenum of matter, with hollow gaps,
would not serve as the Substratum of Infinity of
Extension. a A Substratum of Infinity of Extension
can have no vacua, nor divisions, nor even divisi
bility, of any sort. b In truth, a material substratum
of Infinity of Extension, with empty interstices in
it, would be no fit substratum, nor, indeed, sub
stratum at all: yea, a j^cnum, with vacua, would
be no plenum, or, at most, a, plenum only in words.
But even were one to suppose such a plenum, and
such a substratum, to exist, the supposition would
be made to little purpose. For, while such a
plenum, and substratum, could not serve as the
Substratum of Infinity of Extension, the Infinity
of Extension itself must be conceived to have an
adequate (or indivisible) substratum of its own, if
there be a substratum at all. An adequate Sub
stratum would, in short, necessitate a Substratum,
as without external limits, so without internal
interstices. Ab intra, no less than ab extra, there
must be no pure vacuum. The supposition, in
a Sub-Prop, prececl., Postal. 7. > Prop. IV. Sehol.
c Prop. IV. 5.
18 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
question, would, therefore, be made in vain ; or,
rather, it would be worse than in vain, and fruitless,
since it would be fruitful of very undesired con
2. As it is here, so it will be there. Why,
then, should any one suppose, even as the merest
hypothesis, that, although matter have, or may
have, vacuous spaces interspersed through it, or in
it, (a supposition this involved in the position of
the divisibility and moveability of matter,) matter
yet has no general boundaries ? Why suppose
divisible and moveable, and, therefore, possibly
vacuous, matter to be infinitely extended in that
imperfect sense ? It has been demonstrated, that
matter is finite in extension.^ What, then, would
avail such a blind hypothesis ? What could avail
the hypothesis of a plenum, with vacua, but without
general limits, that is, without vacuum all around
the limits of matter as a whole, seeing that the
circumferential spaces of every internal vacuum
bound, or limit, the material extension all round
the circumference make, in fine, the matter finite ?
The necessity of the concession of extension finitely
extended in such respect, makes it of no moment
to contend that the extension generally, or as a
whole, is infinite. Extension infinite generally, or
without general boundaries, but with interspersed
hollownesses, were not true infinite extension
a Sub- Prop, preced., Dem. 6.
PART I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 19
(which implies fulness) but, at most infinity, in
number, of finite extensions : each one of the
empty interstices bounding, or limiting, or makiug
finite, the extension all round the circumferential
spaces. A single vacuum, indeed, anywhere in the
Material Universe would destroy plenitude : all the
lines converging on the vacuum, great or little-
would be stopped by its circumference. The exten
sion of the matter would be infallibly arrested,
whenever the rim, or superficies, of the vacuum
3. In fine, to allege, that Matter, or (if you
will) a plenum of matter, exists, with so many, or
not so many, i.e., infinitely numerous, vacua con
tained in it, and interspersed throughout it, as a
whole ; were simply a form of the position, Matter
is finite in extension. If matter be finite in this
regard, it is worth no one s while to contend for
its infinitude in the sense of no general boundaries.
In fact, accept, or admit, (and who, after the
preceding demonstration, can deny ?) the fmiteness
in extent, in the one sense ; and what could be the
purpose to be served in asserting, that matter is
infinite in extension, in the other sense ? Gener
ally, and to all practical intents, that which is
divisible much more, that which is moveable, is
finite in extent.
20 THS ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
GENERAL SCHOLIUM AS TO EXTENSION.
1. The parts of Infinity of Extension, or of
its Substratum, if it have a Substratum, being
necessarily indivisible from each other, a and im-
moveable among themselves : b and the parts of
the Material Universe being divisible from each
other, and moveable among themselves : and it
therefore following, that the Material Universe is
not the Substratum of Infinity of Extension, but
is finite in extension : c Here are two sorts of
extension. The one sort, that which the Material
Universe has : And the other, the extension of
Infinity of Extension. And as Infinity of Exten
sion is necessarily existing, d and as the extension
of the Material Universe must exist, if it exist, in
the extension of Infinity of Extension ; a part of
this, or of its Substratum, if it have a Substratum,
(part, but in the sense of partial consideration ; a )
must penetrate the Material Universe, and every
atom, even the minutest atom, of it.
2. It will be proper, therefore, to distinguish
between these two kinds of extension. And,
accordingly, let us confine to matter, namely, to
the distance of the extremities of matter from each
other, the name extension; and apply to the
a Prop. II. Dem. 2, & Prop. IV. 5.
b Coroll. from Prop. II. Dem., & Coroll. under Prop. IV.
c Prop. IV. Sub-Prop. Dem. 6. d Prop. I. 2.
PART L] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 21
extension of Infinity of Extension, a part of which
(part, in the sense of partial consideration only, a )
penetrates all matter to the minutest atom, or
corpuscular monad, the name Expansion.
3. And, therefore, every thing which hath
been proved to be true in relation to that exten
sion which matter has not, must be true with
regard to Expansion.
1. Penetration, as evidenced in the foregoing
General Scholium, being postulated, a most im
portant result makes its appearance. Infinity of
Extension Expansion, rather, or its Substratum,
(if there be one,) penetrates matter : hence, we have
the fact, and the doctrine, of Spirituality coming
to the surface. That which intimately penetrates
matter all matter, of whatever kind is, of course,
immaterial : and it is no unwarrantable step farther
to take, to advance that the Immaterial Being or
Substance (a Substance, on any supposition* 3 ) which
penetrates all matter, may be called a Spiritual
Substance : in one word, a Spirit.
2. Therefore, there has been proved to be a
Spiritual Substance of Infinity of Expansion. And
if any one should prefer to speak of such as being
a Prop. II. Dem. $ -2.
> Prop. III. 3, & 5, with Gen. Schol. 3.
22 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
an Infinite Spirit, no fault would, or righteously
could, be found with such a mode of speaking.
3. Thus, there is existing necessarily a Spiritual
Substance, or Spirit, of Infinity of Expansion, or,
in other words, an Infinite Spirit.
4. But although the Spirituality of the
Necessary Being of Infinity of Expansion has been
manifested, it will not be requisite or expedient to
introduce, in express words, the element of the
Spirituality at every stage, and carry it expressly
along from point to point. It shall suffice to
know, and bear in mind, that the principle, in con
nection with the Being of Infinity of Expansion, is
always latently present ready, when necessary, to
be evoked, and drawn from potentiality into
actuality. The principle may be referred to once
more in the course of this Division. But, at all
events, the element shall nowise be neglected
when, at a future stage, there shall be a
summarizing, to a certain extent, of the various
more salient elements of the entire demonstration. 31
There is necessarily but one Being of Infinity of
1. Infinity of Expansion either subsists by
itself, or it subsists not without a Substratum. 15 In
a See the concluding General Scholium, 4, &c.
b Prop. III. 1, compared with Gen. Schol. as to Extens. 3.
PART I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 23
both cases there is necessarily a Being of Infinity
of Expansion.* Now, we are under a necessity of
inferring from the existence of such a Being, that
there is but one such Being.
2. For, as tis evident, there can be but one
Infinity of Expansion, so, on the supposition that
it subsists by itself, and so is a being, b there can be
but one being of Infinity of Expansion. And, as
tis evident there can no more be more than one
Substratum of Infinity of Expansion (whatever
that Substratum is) than there can be more than
one Infinity of Expansion ; and as, therefore, tis
evident, there can be but one Substratum of
Infinity of Expansion : so, on the supposition that
Infinity of Expansion subsists not without a
Substratum, or Being, there can be but one Being
of Infinity of Expansion.
3. And, therefore, any one who asserts he can
suppose two or more necessarily existing beings,
each of Infinity of Expansion, is no more to be
argued with than one who denies, Whatever is, is.
The denying of this proposition cannot, indeed, be
regarded as more curious than the affirming of the
4. Then, there is, necessarily, but one Being of
Infinity of Expansion.
a Prop. III. 3, & 4, 5, & Gen. Schol. 3.
h Prop. III. g 3, & Gen. Schol. 3.
c Prop. III. $> 4, 5, & Gen. Schol. 3.
24 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
Infinity of Duration is, necessarily, existing.
1. The truth of this is evident from the same
sort of consideration as shows there is necessarily
Infinity of Extension ; to wit, that, even when we
endeavour to remove from our minds the idea of
Infinity of Duration, that is, Infinity of Duration
a parte ante and a parte post, we cannot, after all
our efforts, avoid leaving this idea still there.
Endeavour as much as we may to displace the idea,
that is, conceive Infinity of Duration a parte ante,
or a parte post, non-existent, we shall find, after a
review of our thoughts, that to do so is utterly
beyond our power.
2. And since, even when we would remove
the conception of Infinity of Duration from the
mind, we necessarily leave the conception of it, as
existing, behind ; tis manifest, that Infinity of
Duration necessarily exists : Because, Every thing
the existence of ivhich we cannot but believe, is
3. Infinity of Duration is, then, necessarily
PART II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 25
Infinity of Duration is, necessarily, indivisible.
This Proposition is equivalent to another : to
wit, The parts of Infinity of Duration are necessarily
indivisible from each other ; and indivisible really
1. As was laid down before, what is divisible
may be divided ; and that which is divided from
something else must have superficies, every way,
and be separated from the other thing, be the
distance ever so small. There is no difference
between being divided and being separated.
2. Then, divisibility meaning possibility of
separation : Because the parts of Infinity of Dura
tion are necessarily inseparable, they are necessarily
3. Infinity of Duration is, then, necessarily
COROLLARY FROM PROPOSITION II.
Infinity of Duration is, necessarily, immoveable.
The Corollary is tantamount to this proposition,
The parts of Infinity of Duration are necessarily
immoveable among themselves, really or mentally.
26 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
1. Motion of the parts, among themselves, of
Infinity of Duration, would necessarily involve
separation of its parts. And its parts being
necessarily incapable of separation, a are, therefore,
necessarily immoveable among themselves.
2. Infinity of Duration is, then, necessarily
There is, necessarily, a Being of Infinity of
1. Either, Infinity of Duration exists, or is
conceived to exist, without a substratum ; or, it
exists not, or is conceived not to exist, without
2. First, If Infinity of Duration exist by itself,
it is a substance. For should any one deny that it
is a substance, if it so exist ; we shall prove, past
contradiction, the absurdity of the denial, by just
demanding the reason -why Infinity of Duration is
not a substance, if it exist without a substratum,
or by itself.
3. And therefore, as there is necessarily In
finity of Duration , b there is, supposing it to exist
by itself, a substance or being of Infinity of
a Part II. Prop. ii. Dem. 2. b Part II. Prop. i. 2.
PART II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 27
Duration necessarily existing : Infinity of Duration
and the being of Infinity of Duration being
identical, not different.
4. Secondly, If Infinity of Duration exist not
without a Substratum, there is a Substance or
Being of Infinity of Duration. For the word
Substance or Being can never, it is certain, stand
for anything having a better claim to the applica
tion of the term than such Substratum.
5. And as Infinity of Duration is necessarily
existing,* so there is necessarily a Substance or
Being of Infinity of Duration, on the supposition
that it exists not without a Substratum.
6. Then, there is, necessarily, a Being of
Infinity of Duration.
The Being of Infinity of Duration is, necessarily,
of unity and simplicity.
1. As Infinity of Duration is necessarily
indivisible, 13 so it is necessarily of the truest unity.
For, if what is necessarily indivisible, even by
thought, be not of the truest unity, what unity
consists in is altogether unintelligible.
2. And since Infinity of Duration is necessarily
* Part II. Prop. i. 2. b Part II. Prop. ii. Dem. 2.
THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
of the truest unity, it is, also, of the utmost
simplicity. Because, we can have no conception
of what is in simplicity, that is not in unity
caused by a thing being necessarily indivisible.
3. And as there necessarily is a being of
Infinity of Duration, on the supposition that
Infinity of Duration exists without a substratum, a
so, this supposed, the being is necessarily of unity
4. If Infinity of Duration exist not without a
Substratum ; that the Substratum is of the truest
unity and utmost simplicity, is a thing not difficult
to be demonstrated.
5. For, that the Substratum of Infinity of
Duration is no more divisible than Infinity of Dura
tion, is a self-evident truth. Therefore, because
Infinity of Duration is necessarily indivisible, b so is
6. And Infinity of Duration, because neces
sarily indivisible, being necessarily of unity and
simplicity, its Substratum, for the same reason, is
7. And as there necessarily is a Beino- of
Infinity of Duration, on the supposition that
Infinity of Duration exists not without a Sub
stratum/ 1 so, this supposed, the Being is necessarily
of unity and simplicity.
a Part II. Prop. iii. 3. c Supra, 1 & 2.
b Part II. Prop. ii. Dem. 2. i Part II. Prop. iii. 5.
PART II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 29
8. Then, the Being of Infinity of Duration is,
necessarily, of unity and simplicity.
The Substratum of Infinity of Duration bein^
necessarily indivisible,* that is, its parts being
necessarily indivisible from each other ; it is a
necessary consequence, that the thing, the parts of
which are divisible from each other, is not such
Substratum, nor any part thereof.
It is a corollary from the proposition, The parts
of the Substratum of Infinity of Duration are
necessarily indivisible from each other, that they are
necessarily immoveable among themselves : Just as
Infinity of Duration is necessarily immoveable,
because necessarily indivisible.
And the parts of the Substratum of Infinity of
Duration being necessarily immoveable among
themselves ; b it is a necessary consequence, that
the thing, the parts of which are moveable "///////
themselves, is not such Substratum, nor any part
a Part II. Prop. iv. 5. b Coroll. preced.
30 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
The Material Universe is finite in duration.
Just as it will be maintained, that the Material
Universe is the Substratum of Infinity of Extension,
if it be contended that the Material Universe is
truly of Infinity of Extension ; so, it will be held,
that the Material Universe is the Substratum of
Infinity of Duration, if it be alleged that the
Material Universe is, of itself, of Infinity of
Duration, d parte ante. To contend that the
Material Universe is, of itself, of Infinity of Dura
tion, a parte ante, is tantamount to holding that
there is an indissoluble bond which we are under
a necessity of conceiving ; so that the Infinity of
Duration cannot be conceived to have existed
without the Material Universe, the correlate. Now,
such a position, regarding an indissoluble bond in
our conceptions between Matter and Duration,
would be held in the face of the notorious and
decisive fact, that no such bond has any existence
whatsoever in our conceptions. But not to rest on
the undoubted and readily evincible fact in
psychological experience, that the human mind can
most easily conceive the non-existence, from
Infinity of Duration, past or to come, of Matter ;
no bond, which can anywise represent a necessary
PART II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 31
bond or relation, can be imagined, other than the
relation between the two of Mode and Substratum,
whereby the Infinity of Duration stands for Mode,
(Quality, Property, Attribute, anything, in fact,
you like,) and the Matter bears to the other the
relation of Substratum or Substance. Tis posited,
in fine, by the maintairiers of the fact of the
indissoluble bond in our conceptions between the
Infinity of Duration and the Matter, that the
Infinity of Duration cannot be id cst, cannot be
conceived to be without the Matter, because this
is the Substratum of that, the Mode.
1. If, then, it should be held, that the finitely a
extended Material Universe is the Substratum of
Infinity of Duration, or a part thereof; (which
will noticeably be held, if it be alleged that the
Material Universe is, of itself, of Infinity of Dura
tion, ct, parte ante;) to put to the proof whether or
not the Material Universe can be such Substratum,
or a part thereof, we have but to ask, Arc the parts
cf the Material Universe divisible from each other ?
and, Are they moveable among themselves ? For
if they be so divisible and moveable, the Material
Universe cannot be the Substratum of Infinity of
Duration, nor any part thereof, lj the Substratum
a Part I. Prop. iv. Sub-Prop.
b Part II. Schol. I. & n. under Prop. iv.
32 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
having 110 parts in the sense of capability of
2. Now, we know, certainly, that some parts
of the Material Universe are divisible from each
other; and that every part of it to which our
minds could be directed is as divisible, as are the
parts which we certainly know are divisible, is the
conclusion to which the rules of philosophy entitle
us to come.
3. Then, the Material Universe cannot be the
Substratum of Infinity of Duration, nor any part
4. Again, we know, certainly, that some parts
of the Material Universe are moveable among
themselves; and that every part of it to which our
minds could be directed is as moveable. as are the
parts which we certainly know are moveable, is
(in this, as well as in the other case) the conclusion
to which we are entitled to come.
5. Then, again, the Material Universe cannot
be the Substratum of Infinity of Duration, nor any
6. That is, the Material Universe is finite in
duration. For, were it of Infinity of Duration,
it would be the Substratum thereof, or, at least,
a part of the Substratum. But it being not
that Substratum, nor any part of it : Therefore,
it, of itself, is not of Infinity of Duration, but
;i Part II. Prop. iv. 5.
PART II. THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 33
is finite in duration. So it began sometime to
7. Thus, the Material Universe is finite in
1. To state, in few words, the result of the
whole reasoning on the topic introduced by the
Sub-Proposition, set down above : The truth is,
that, while Matter, or (if you prefer it) the
Material Universe, is emphatically the divisible,
and the moveable ; Duration, or Infinity of Dura
tion, is the subject to which the predicates, divisible,
moveable, are totally inapplicable. The ideas of
the two things, Duration, and divisibility by
separability of parts, are absolutely incompatible.
And, on the other hand, Matter is simply another
word for that which is divisible in every sense, or
in every possible way. How, then, can the one
that which is so divisible be so bound up with
the other that to which the idea of division, or
divisibility, of any sort, is so utterly repugnant
as that the two tilings must be always associated
together ? The plain truth is, that the notion of
such junction is purely preposterous.
2. When, therefore, one shall be met with
maintaining, or consequentially implying, by any
position he may maintain, that the Material
Universe, as a substance, or existence of any sort,
34 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
the parts of which are divisible from each other,
and moveable among themselves, in every variety
of way ; can be, and is, the substratum of that
other thing, Duration, even Infinity of Duration,
to which it is ridiculous to think of applying the
notion of divisibility at all, (far less, moveability of
parts from parts : ) what are we to make of the
allegation ? Examine well, and, if it be clear that
the propounder of the dictum is seriously in
earnest, then there is plainly a case, not for any
doctor of philosophy, but for a doctor of medicine,
exclusively and imperatively. And as a philosopher
labouring under a manifest intellectual delusion
has never been found, in any age or country, to
be the most eligible company ; the sooner so
unprofitable perhaps, so dangerous companion
ship is dissolved, the better for the party whose
headpiece is yet unshattered and entire.
COROLLARY FROM SUB-PROPOSITION.
Every succession of finitely extended substances
is finite in duration.
1. Should it, now, be asserted that any suc
cession, or successions, of substances finite in
extension ; finite in extension, for not to say,
that there can be but one Substance, or Being, of
Infinity of Extension, a a succession of substances
a Part I. Prop, v., & 3, Gen. Schol. under Prop. iv.
PART II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 35
of Infinity of Extension were we know not what :
Should it be asserted, that any successions, or any
one succession, of substances say, of animals, or
vegetables, or minerals, or all together, or of
worlds, or of systems of worlds, or systems of
germs of worlds is of Infinity of Duration ; the
falsity of the assertion is, immediately and abund
antly, apparent. For, seeing that the whole finitely
extended Material Universe, itself, is finite in
duration, a every succession of substances which
are in the Material Universe (and, of course, there
can be no substances finite in extension which are
out of it) must, therefore, be finite in duration,
2. Should it be pertinaciously alleged yet
farther, that not substances in the Material
Universe, but such a world, as one actually
existing whole, is but an item in a succession of
worlds, or germs of worlds, having no beginning,
or being of Infinity of Duration a parte ante : then,
the ready answer would be, that a succession (of
whatever kind) does, most obviously, involve
motion, or things moved ; since successions, or but
a single course of succession, implies, by the very
nature thereof, motion, things succeeding each
other, being things moved in relation to each other.
Now, things (successions, as you will, of motes, or
molehills, or mountains, or worlds, or systems of
a Sub-Prop, preced.
36 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
worlds, or systems of germs of worlds) which are
moved, cannot be the Substratum of Infinity of
Duration, nor any part of it : a and, therefore, can
not be of Infinity of Duration, but are tied down
to finiteness in duration. 1 * But an answer, over
whelmingly potent, is at hand, as a preliminary bar
to any such supposition as is set down. The over
whelming preliminary is this : After all, such a
succession of Universes as that ex hypothesi
advanced, would be but our own old Material
Universe, itself, in disguise. The supposed succes
sion of worlds emerging, one by one, from the depths
of eternity, would be nothing more than the
Material Universe under one of its conceivable (if
it be conceivable) or possible phases, or as a system
of primordia rerum renewing itself, phoenix-like,
over and over again. And we have seen, that the
Material Universe itself is finite in duration. 13
3. Every succession of material substances, is,
then, finite in duration.
Iliere is, necessarily, but one Being of Infinity
1. Infinity of Duration either exists without a
substratum, or, it exists not without a Substratum : c
a Part II. Prop. iv. Schol. n. b Supra, Sub-Prop. Dem. 6.
c Part II. Prop. iii. 1.
PART 1 1.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 37
And in either case, there necessarily is a Being of
Infinity of Duration.* And we are under the
necessity of inferring from the existence of such a
Being, that there can be no more than one such
2. Because tis manifest there can be but one
Injinity of Duration, therefore, on the supposition
that it exists without a substratum, and, so, is a
being, b there can be but one being of Infinity of
Duration. And because tis as manifest there can
be but one Substratum of Injinity of Duration
(whatever the Substratum is), as that there can be
but one Infinity of Duration ; and because, there
fore, tis manifest there can be but one such Sub
stratum : therefore, on the supposition that Infinity
of Duration exists not without a Substratum, or
Beinor there can be but one Beino; of Infinity
o o y
3. Then, there is, necessarily, but one Being
of Infinity of Duration.
> Part II. Prop. iii. i$ 3 & 5. Part II. Prop. iii. 3.
Part II. Prop. iii. 4.
38 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
There is, necessarily, a Being of Infinity of Expan
sion and Infinity of Duration.
1. This will be demonstrated, if it be proved,
that the necessarily existing Being of Infinity of
Expansion, and the necessarily existing Being of
Infinity of Duration, are not different Beings, but
2. Now, either, Infinity of Expansion subsists
by itself, and, then, it is a Being : a and, Infinity
of Duration exists by itself, and, then, it is a
3. Or, Infinity of Expansion subsists not
without a Substratum, or Being : c and, Infinity of
Duration exists not without a Substratum, or
4. To take the former alternative. Every
part of Infinity of Expansion being in every part
of Infinity of Duration, every part of the Being
of Infinity of Expansion is in every part of the
a Part I. Prop. iii. 1 & 3, compared with Gen. Schol. 3.
b Part II. Prop. iii. 1 & 3.
c Part I. Prop. iii. 1 & 5, and Gen. Schol. 3.
d Part II. Prop. iii. 1 & 4.
PART III.J THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 39
Being of Infinity of Duration. And every part
of Infinity of Duration being in every part of
Infinity of Expansion, every part of the Being of
Infinity of Duration is in every part of the Being
of Infinity of Expansion. Part, in all the cases, in
the sense of partial consideration only.
5. To-wit, The whole of Infinity of Expansion
being in the whole of Infinity of Duration, the
whole of the Being of Infinity of Expansion is in
the whole of the Being of Infinity of Duration.
And, The whole of Infinity of Duration being in
the whole of Infinity of Expansion, the whole of
the Being of Infinity of Duration is in the whole of
the Being of Infinity of Expansion. Whole, in
every instance, but as a figure.
6. And this being, most manifestly, impossible,
if the Being of Infinity of Expansion and the
Being of Infinity of Duration be different ; it
necessarily follows, that they are identical.
7. That is, Infinity of Expansion is Infinity
of Duration, and Infinity of Duration is Infinity
of Expansion. Which conclusion being plainly
absurd ; and it necessarily following irom the
supposition, that Infinity of Expansion subsists by
itself, and that Infinity of Duration subsists by
itself, it is proved, that the supposition itself is
absurd. Therefore, Infinity of Expansion cannot
exist by itself, and Infinity of Duration cannot
exist by itself.
40 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
8. Then, to turn to the other alternative,
Infinity of Expansion subsists not without a Sub
stratum, or Being : and Infinity of Duration
subsists not without a Substratum, or Being.
9. And, as every part of Infinity of Expansion
is in every part of Infinity of Duration, therefore,
every part of the Substratum of Infinity of Expan
sion is in every part of the Substratum of Infinity
of Duration. And, as every part of Infinity of
Duration is in every part of Infinity of Expansion,
therefore, every part of the Substratum of Infinity
of Duration is in every part of the Substratum of
Infinity of Expansion. Part, but in the sense of
10. That is, The whole of Infinity of Expansion
being in the whole of Infinity of Duration, the
whole of the Substratum of Infinity of Expansion
is in the whole of the Substratum of Infinity of
Duration. And, The whole of Infinity of Dura
tion being in the whole of Infinity of Expansion,
the whole of the Substratum of Infinity of Duration
is in the whole of the Substratum of Infinity of
Expansion. Whole, in all the cases, used figura
11. And this being, most manifestly, impossible,
if the Substratum, or Being, of Infinity of Expan
sion, and the Substratum, or Being, of Infinity of
Duration, be different, it follows necessarily, that
they are identical : To- wit, the Substratum, or
PART III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 41
Being, of Infinity of Expansion is, also, the Sub
stratum, or Being, of Infinity of Duration.
12. And this being proved, it is demonstrated,
there is, necessarily, a Being of Infinity of Expan
sion, and Infinity of Duration.*
13. Then, there is, necessarily, a Being of
Infinity of Expansion and Infinity of Duration.
1. Combinations of the alternatives might have
been made other than those presented in Sections
2 & 3, in the preceding Proposition. Two sets of
combinations are there given ; but a third set might
have been added. It is not thought necessary,
however, to state the additional combinations of
alternatives, in a formal manner, and as positions
demanding consideration far less, rigid discussion.
Those other combinations of alternative proposi
tions, going to constitute the third set, would be.
at best, only stupid and inept methods of saying
virtually the things over ao-ain which were said
J O O
2. Exempli gratia, if one should contend that
Infinity of Expansion subsists by itself, and that
such is to be combined with Infinity of Duration,
which exists not without a Substratum, and which
has for its Substratum the self-subsisting Infinity
a Supra, 1.
42 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
of Expansion : what were this, at bottom, but a
way of imperfectly and clumsily stating what
comes, and amounts, to the same thing as the
conclusion actually arrived at, by a more unobjec
tionable method, a The Being of Infinity of Expan
sion is, also, the Substratum, or Being, of Infinity
of Duration ?
3. Again, were one to simply reverse matters,
and urge that the Infinity of Duration it is which
exists by itself, and that the Infinity of Expansion
it is which subsists not without a Substratum, the
Substratum being the Infinity of Duration : what,
in the way of conclusion, would be really advanced
(so far as there is truly any comprehensible sense
in the statement) more than what is alleged already
when it was said, as the demonstrated conclusion, b
There is, necessarily, a Being of Infinity of Expan
sion, and Infinity of Duration ?
4. Besides, and as the preliminary fatal objec
tion to such supposita (which have undoubtedly
their own inherent and ineradicable impossibilities :)
No good reason can be given why either of these
arbitrary, and ungainly, combinations should be
preferred to the other. Why should one be allowed
to hold, that Expansion can subsist, or exist, by
itself, more than Duration can be self-subsistent, or
self-existent : or, that Duration can exist, or subsist,
by itself, more than Expansion can do so ? It is
a Vide preced. Prop., 11. b Vide, ibid., 12.
PART III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 43
absolutely indispensable that a rational pretext
should be set up, or laid down, for the preference,
since, Whatever (a thought in your mind, as much
as one in mine, or his) Whatever begins to be must
have a cause. And no rational pretext whatever
can be given in this case, i.e., for a preference of
the one unseemly combination to the other. Try
all you can to hit upon a sufficient reason, and,
in the end, confess the truth that tis really so : no
reason for a preference is discoverable.
The Being of Infinity of Expansion and Infinity
of Duration is, necessarily, of unity and
1. The Being of Infinity of Expansion is,
necessarily, of unity and simplicity. 8 And, the
Being of Infinity of Duration is, necessarily, of
unity and simplicity. 13 And these two being not
different, but identical, it follows, that the Being
of Infinity of Expansion and Infinity of Duration
is, necessarily, of unity and simplicity.
2. Then, the Being of Infinity of Expansion
and Infinity of Duration is, necessarily, of unity
a Part I. Prop. iv. 8, compared with Gen. Schol. 3.
b Part II. Prop. iv. 8. c Part III. Prop. i. 11.
44 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I.
TJiere is, necessarily, but one Being of Infinity of
Expansion and Infinity of Duration.
1. There is, necessarily, but one Being of
Infinity of Expansion.* And the Being of Infinity
of Expansion being also the Being of Infinity of
Duration, 13 it follows, that there is, necessarily, but
one Being of Infinity of Expansion and Infinity
2. Then, there is, necessarily, but one Being
of Infinity of Expansion and Infinity of Duration.
We may, for an instant, evoke here the always
latent principle or element of Spirituality. It has
been shewn, that there is an Immaterial or Spiritual
Substance, or Being, of Infinity of Expansion ;
and there is but one such Substance or Beiug. d
It has been demonstrated, too, that the Being
of Infinity of Expansion is, also, of Infinity
of Duration, 6 and that there is but one such. f
Consequently, as there is one, so there is
but one, Immaterial or Spiritual Substance, or
a Part I. Prop. v. 4. J Part I. Prop, v., and Gen. Schol.
b Part III. Prop. i. 11. e Part III. Prop. i.
c Part I. Sub-Prop., Sub-Schol. * Part III. Prop. iii.
PART III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 45
Being, of Infinity of Expansion and Infinity of
Here endeth the consideration, as of the BEING,
so of the Natural, or Physical Modes or Attributes.
Those Attributes are also Absolute and Simple.
46 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. II.
THE INTELLECTUAL ATTRIBUTES.
The Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion
and of Duration, is, necessarily, Intelligent,
1. To try to define Intelligence, would be a
vain effort. That which Consciousness, directly
and always, testifies, while thought goes on, is best
evidenced by Consciousness itself. Thought is
best explained by being left without endeavour
2. The same holds with regard to knowing.
What to know is, or essentially involves, is best
come at by keeping silence to the outward ear,
and letting the voices within be alone heard.
3. If you understand wherein Intelligence,
Thought, Consciousness, Knowledge, as subjective,
or without reference to aught beyond the mind
itself, consists, farther than Consciousness itself
PART I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 47
doth immediately testify ; thrice happy and
fortunate, as well as most peculiar, are you, who
ever you be. If, however, none of us can ascend
higher up, or go farther in, than the testimony
itself of Consciousness ; tis because the secret in
the Cogito is the ultimate to us all.
1. Now, that the Simple, Sole, Being of In
finity of Expansion, and of Duration, is Intelligent,
will not be a thing very difficult to demonstrate.
For Intelligence either began to be, or it never
began to be.
2. That it, absolutely speaking, never began
to be, is evident in this, that if it began to be,
in the sense of there never having been any
Intelligence whatever before, it must have had
a cause ; for, Whatever begins to be must have
a cause. And the cause of Intelligence must be
of Intelligence ; for, there having been no Intelli
gence whatever before, What is not of Intelligence
cannot make Intelligence begin to be. Therefore,
if Intelligence began to be, there was Intelligence
before there was Intelligence. Now, Intelligence
being, before Intelligence began to be, is a contra
diction. And this absurdity following from the
supposition, that Intelligence began to be, it is
proved, that Intelligence never began to be : to-
wit, is of Infinity of Duration.
-iS THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR Div. II.
3. And as Intelligence is of Infinity of Dura
tion, and supposes a Being: And no succession of
substances, or beings, is of Infinity of Duration : a
It necessarily follows, that there is one Being of
Infinity of Duration which is of Intelligence. And
as there is but One Being of Infinity of Duration : b
and this Being is of Simplicity : c and is also of
Infinity of Expansion : d It follows, that the
Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion and
of Duration is necessarily of Intelligence.
4. And that this Being is All-knowing, is no
inference from the proposition, that the Simple,
Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion and of
Duration is necessarily of Intelligence, for it is,
indeed, implied by such proposition : A Being of
Intelligence who is of Infinity of Expansion and of
Duration, is convertible with an All-knowing
5. Then, the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity
of Expansion and of Duration, is, necessarily,
Intelligent, and All-knowing.
1. The Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of
Expansion and of Duration, being Intelligent, 6 is a
Mind, a Mind conscious of Itself. An intelligent
a Div. I. Part ii. Coroll. from Sub- Prop.
b Div. I. Part ii. Prop. v. 3. c Div. I. Part ii. Prop. iv. 8.
d Div. I. Part iii. Prop. I. 11. e Dem,, prceced.
PART I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 49
being that is not a mind, being all the same as an
intelligent being that is not, in any proper sense
of the term, intelligent : And a mind which is not
conscious of itself, being just a mind which is not
deserving of the name of mind at all.
2. Perception without the power of apperception
Consciousness of thoughts, without there being-
thought objective to the subjective thought which is
conscious ; would be 110 evidence of the existence
of a mind, in any thorough sense of the term
standing for the true idea of a Mind.* To be con
scious of consciousness, is to have the mind, as
conscious subject, and the objective thought of
which the mind is conscious : this much, at the
least, is implied in the very being of thinking with
The Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion
and of Duration, who is All-knowing, is,
i i ecessa rily , A ll-powe rful.
1. This must be granted, if it be shown, that
the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion
and of Duration, who is All-knowing, made matter
begirt to be.
a Vide, infra, Div. III. Prop. iv. Dem. 14, aliosq; loc.
50 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. II.
2. Then, as the Material Universe is finite in
duration, a or began to be, it must have had a cause ;
for, Whatever begins to be must have a cause.
And that cause must be, in one respect or other,
the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion
and of Duration, who is All-knowing ; b inas
much as, what being, or cause, other than, or
independent of, that Being, could there be ?
And therefore, that Beinsj made matter begin
7 O O
3. The momenta expressed, or implied, in the
proof are these : The Material Universe is finite
in duration, a or it began to be. Whatever begins
to be must have a cause : Therefore, the Material
Universe had a cause. Besides the Simple, Sole,
Being of Infinity of Expansion and of Duration,
there was ere the Material Universe began to be
no substance or being : at any rate, none
admissible on this platform. Whereon no sub
stance or being is introducible without sufficient
warrant in the premises, to wit, the previously
established posita, or supi^osita having independent
necessary supports. Therefore there existed no
Substance or Being to be the cause of the Material
Universe, other than the necessarily existing
Intelligent Substance or Being of Infinity of
Expansion and Duration. Therefore, again, this
Substance or Being was, and must have been, the
a Div. I. Part ii. Sub-Prop. * Supra, Part i.
PART II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 51
very Cause, or Creator, of the Material Universe,
or all matter.
4. By the common consent of philosophers
who have flourished since men have been familiar
ized with the idea of Creation, in the strict and
proper sense, (in the sense, that is, of a creating
being simply the making begin to be ofivhat before
ivas not /) it has been agreed, that to make matter
begin to be, in other words, to create matter,
would evince the possession of unlimited power, or
all power, not involving any contradiction, or
impossibility, or absurdity of any kind. For good
reason, did the philosophers, nemine contradicente,
so agree. If true creation do not prove all-power-
fulness, this can by no means be proved at all.
But Creation is the highest conceivable exercise of
power. Creation is, in truth, the test, and the
sign, of Omnipotence. In fine, .the Being who
created all Matter, namely, all the visible, or (as it
is called) gross matter, and all the particles, atoms,
sperms, elements, however subtile, visible or in-
O * *
visible, solid or imponderable, of matter as men
see it ; that Being can do all possible things. No
truth can be plainer.
5. And it being shown, that the Being in
question did make matter begin to be, it must be
granted, that that Being is, necessarily, All-
a Supra, 1, 2, &c.
52 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. II.
6. Then, the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of
Extension and of Duration, who is All-knowing, is,
The Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion
and of Duration, ivho is All-knowing, and
All-powerful, is, necessarily, entirely Free.
1. This will be evinced, if it be manifested,
that the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expan
sion and of Duration, who is All-knowing, and All-
powerful, made motion begin to be.
2. Now, of all the corporeal substances in
motion, none of them belongs to a succession of
Infinity of Duration, every succession of corporeal
substances being finite in duration. 81 And the
moving substances being all finite in duration, or
having begun sometime to be, they must have had
a cause ; for, Whatever begins to be must have a
cause. And no first cause can be assigned, or even
thought of, other than the Simple, Sole, Being of
Infinity of Expansion and of Duration, who is All-
a Div. I. Part ii. Coroll. from Sub-Prop.
PART III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 53
knowing,* and All-powerful. b Therefore, this Being
made moving substances, or motion, begin to be.
3. No philosopher, of any age, was ever known
to call in question the position, that the Being
causing, or making begin to be, all motion, or
motion absolutely, is Free, or must be supposed to
be Free, Free of all outward or extraneous
influence, i.e., in the truest sense of the word. To
be the cause of all motion to originate absolute
motion, is, and has universally been, allowed to
be the best possible test, and sign, of the posses
sion of true Freeness. There is the common con
sent of philosophers : and there is the sufficient
reason for the universality of doctrine.
4. Motion involves the existence of bodies,
and, so, of matter. If there were no bodies, there
could lie no motion : at any rate, no motion of
the sole kind which could appear on a platform
as between Theist and Atheist, or Materialist.
Motion other than the motion of corporeal things,
were altogether beside the purpose of this demon
stration, at least, as at this precise point in its
progress. Motion, then, implies bodies, or cor
poreal substances ; bodies, again, imply matter.
5. The momenta expressed, or involved, in this
demonstration, are these : Every individual cor
poreal substance, or body, and every set, and every
succession, of bodies, in motion, being finite in
a Supra, Part i. b Supra, Part ii.
54 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. II.
duration, 31 began to be. Whatever begins to be
must have a cause : Therefore, every moving body,
or substance, and every set, or succession, of
moving bodies, had a cause, or creator. Besides
the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion
and of Duration, there was ere motion, all motion,
be<mn to be no Substance or Beino- whatever in
existence, except Matter, which, ex hypothesi, was
at absolute rest. Therefore, there was no sub
stance, or being, to be the cause, or creator, of
motion, other than the necessarily existing Intelli
gent and All-powerful Substance or Being of
Infinity of Expansion and Duration. Therefore,
again, this Substance or Being was, and must be
supposed to have been, the very Cause, or Creator,
of all the motion which began to be, that is, of
all motion whatsoever.
6. And this being manifested, it is evinced,
that that Being is, necessarily, entirely Free. b
7. Then, the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of
Expansion and of Duration, who is All-knowing,
and All-powerful, is, necessarily, entirely Free.
As the Simple, Sole, Being, Mind, or Spirit, of
Infinity of Expansion and Duration, who is All-
knowing, All-powerful, and entirely Free, was the
a Div. I. Part ii. Coroll. from Sub-Prop.
b Supra, 1, 2, &c.
PART III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 55
cause of all substances that move,* or, in other
words, all successions of substances, or beings, (for
tis plain, that successions of beings, as successions,
are moved ;) therefore, that Being was the Cause of
the particular successions, or succession, of men.
To express the same thing otherwise, The Being
in question made the succession, or successions,
of those intellectual and moral beings denominated
men, begin to be. That is, that Being is the
Creator of men.
With this Division, the consideration of the
Attributes called, by a certain licence, the Intellect
ual Attributes, ends. Those Intellectual Attri
butes may, moreover, be said to fall under the
head of the Absolute Attributes. They are, like
wise, to be classed with the Simple Attributes, or
those which are not Complex or Compound.
Lastly, the Attributes being divided according
to another classification, those Intellectual Attri
butes fall to be ranged among the Psychical, and,
among the Psychical, their place is the first.
a Prop, preced. 2, 3, &c.
56 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
THE MORAL ATTRIBUTES.
TEE TRANSITIONAL ATTRIBUTES.
The Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion
and of Duration, who is All-knowing, All-
powerful, and entirely Free, is, necessarily,
1. Every position which we cannot but believe,
is a necessary truth.* But we cannot but believe,
that the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expan
sion and of Duration, who is All-knowing, All-
powerful, and entirely Free, is completely Happy.
Therefore, that this Being is completely Happy, is
a necessary truth. The minor proposition of the
syllogism is the only proposition standing in any
need of expatiation. The major is an undeniable
axiom : a and the conclusion is the unavoidable
a Vide, infra, Div. V. Prop. i. 2.
SuB-Div. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 57
$ -. Before we could righteously predicate
unhappiness of the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity
of Expansion and of Duration, who is All -knowing,
All-powerful, and entirely Free, w r e would require
to know of some sufficient reason for the predication.
But we can know of none. For every kind, and
degree, of unhappiness must proceed, or be
resolvable into what proceeds, from some natural
defect, or imperfection : And what imperfection
can that Simple Being be subject to, who, Only,
is of Infinity of Expansion and of Duration, who is
All-knowing, All-powerful, and entirely Free?
3. And as we can have no sufficient reason for
ascribing unhappiness to that Being ; so, on the
other hand, there is a sufficient reason why we
cannot help ascribing to It Happiness the most
complete. For, the Being is a Mind, a conscious of
Itself: that is, It perceives Its own attributes, or
perfections, and is conscious of the thoughts
whereby It perceives them. b How could a Mind
conscious of perceiving, as appertaining to Itself,
such attributes as Infinity of Expansion and of
Duration, All-powerfulness, entire Freeness. be
supposed otherwise than as most consummately
4. Truly, therefore, we cannot but believe,
a Div. II. Parti. Schol. 1.
b Vide, supra, 2, Schol. apud Part i. Div. II. Ac vide, infra,
Prop. iv. Dem. 14.
58 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
that the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of
Expansion and of Duration, who is All-knowing,
All-powerful, and entirely Free, is completely
5. Then, the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity
of Expansion and of Duration, who is All-knowing,
All-powerful, and entirely Free, is, necessarily,
The Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion
and of Duration, ivho is All-knowing, All-
powerful, entirely Free, and completely
Happy, is, necessarily, perfectly Good.
1. On the supposition, that the Simple, Sole,
Being of Infinity of Expansion and of Duration,
who is All-knowing, All-powerful, entirely Free,
and completely Happy, created intellectual and
moral beings indeed, any animal natures what
ever ; the only motive, or, if you think there were
more motives than one, one of the motives, to create,
must be believed to have been, a desire to make
happiness besides Its own consummate Happiness
begin to be. And should there be assigned any
additional motive, it cannot be believed to have
been incompatible with such desire. The reason
being very plain : A Mind labouring with incon
gruous motives cannot be happy.
SUB-DIV. L] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 59
-2. But it has been demonstrated that tis the
case, that the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of
Expansion and of Duration, who is All-knowing,
All-powerful, entirely Free, and completely Happy,
created intellectual and moral, or, to employ a
most comprehensive term, sentient, substances or
^3. Therefore, the only motive, or, at least, one
of the motives, to create, must have been, a desire
to produce creaturely happiness. The will to create
moral intelligences, in one word, men, involves,
on the part of the essentially Happy Creating Mind,
a desire to communicate of or, according to Its
own. Had there been no such will, the will pre
supposing the desire, in the Divine Nature, the
Divine would have remained sole, alone, without
the creatures. But creation having become an
accomplished fact, a we can legitimately argue back
to the indispensably requisite sine qud non conchtio,
without which the creature-minds must have been
as impossible as an effect without any cause.
4. The consequentially necessary connection
between the consummate Happiness of the Simple,
Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion and of Dura
tion, who is All-knowing, All-powerful, and entirely
Free ; and Its desire to communicate happiness, all
possible happiness (for there is no sufficient reason
why we should suppose the amount of happiness to
"Div. II. Part iii. SehoL, & Div. III. Prop. i. 4.
60 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
be bestowed on the creatures, as creatures, to be
less than it might be :) the necessary connection,
we say, is intuitively evident. By no stretch of
imagination can we conceive, that the Simple, Sole,
Being of Infinity of Expansion and of Duration,
who is All-knowing, All-powerful, and completely
Happy, could be the Free Cause of misery, or aught
but happiness, to Its creatures : Unless we can
conceive, that happiness, as happiness, can give
birth to its opposite ; the cause being wholly
disproportionate to the effect.
5. Now, to produce, in consequence of desire
to produce, all possible creaturely happiness, is to
be perfectly Good.
6. From all which, it is most obvious, that the
Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of Expansion and of
Duration, who is All-knowing, All-powerful, entirely
Free, and completely Happy, is, necessarily,
7. Then, the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of
Expansion and of Duration, who is All-knowing,
All-powerful, entirely Free, and completely Happy,
is, necessarily, perfectly Good.
1. This Proposition as to Goodness, is the
great transition Proposition. It passes from the
absolute positions to those which are purely
SUB-DIV. L] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 61
relative : itself constituting the link between the
two sorts. The truly absolute Propositions dis
course of an unconditioned Being, which, a
Supreme Mind, yet exists in, and by, and for,
Itself: while Goodness takes (so to speak) that
Mind beyond (as it were) Itself, and supplies
the creaturely objects for the exercise and dis
play of the relative Moral Attributes or Per
2. The penultimate Proposition, with its
positions relating to Happiness, is it is to be
noted of a different complexion, in that the
Happiness, strictly considered, is quite an absolute
thing. That is, the Being treated of in the Pro
position now in question is consummately Happy
in Itself. By Itself, it is in possession of complete
Happiness ; needing, or indeed admitting of, access,
or the possibility of increase, in essential Happi
ness, from no quarter whatever ; least of all,
from the creature, the product of Its own Will,
and mere good pleasure. But, the Happiness
overflowing, Goodness, as a distinct thing, is to
be seen in being, and the creature, in its train,
is the result. The creature once in conscious
existence, objects for the manifestation of the
relative Qualities or Properties of Mind stand out
3. There may be much propriety in noticing,
on this occasion, a nice, perhaps, but, withal, very
G2 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
important distinction. Remark we, then, that
Goodness, as appertaining to the Supreme Mind, is
no such single and simple thing as one might too
hastily conclude it to be. Goodness has, indeed,
two sides ; or it may be said to look with two faces.
On the one side, it may be regarded as the still
complacency of the Supreme Spirit, disposing It
contemplatively and abstractly to doings of Benevol
ence. The other face of Goodness presents us with
the actual active kindnesses exercised in regard to
the already existing creature-minds, the images, to
some extent, of that Supreme Mind. In the first
way, there is perfect Happiness ready to overflow,
and, creating, to flood the other with gladness : In
the second way, the Happiness, so consummate,
has run over into, being mingled with, acts of
actual Goodness, by the continuous production of a
creation with Intellectual and Moral agents capable,
according to their measure, of happiness them
selves. The creatures, once in being, are objects
fitted to be continuously and lastingly receptive of
the Most Happy Creator s successive communica
4. But Goodness, as the principle and fount of
sustained series of actings, belongs rather to
another head, and the student may be prepared for
finding Goodness, seen in such light, handled under
a subsequent Proposition. a
a Vide, infra, Prop. IV. in this same Division.
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 63
With Proposition I. in this Division, terminate
the purely Absolute Attributes. As a whole, these
two Propositions of this Sub-Division constitute
and exhaust the Transitional, and prepare the way
for the directly Relative, Moral Attributes. Of
course, those Propositions carry on the series of
the Propositions relating to the Attributes which
are the Simple and the Psychical.
THE MORAL ATTRIBUTES.
THE RELATIVE ATTRIBUTES.
1. In place of the words, "The Simple, Sole,
" Being of Infinity of Expansion and of Duration,
" who is All-knowing, All-powerful, entirely Free,
"and completely Happy," as well as "perfectly
" Good," as occurring in the last section of the last
Sub-Proposition ; a or in place of any such collection
a Viz. Div. III. Prop. i. Sub-Prop. 7.
64 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
of words ; for the future, we shall employ the one
term GOD. That is, so often as is desirable we
shall do so.
2. This substitution will be highly advan
tageous, inasmuch as it will save repetitions of
words, in clauses consisting of many words.
Twill be certainly a great object gained, to prevent
the necessity, ever recurring, of using so many
words, in cases where each word, or phrase, is
simply syncategorematic, or a part only of the
complex term which forms the subject of the
proposition. In the generality of cases, such
circumlocutions might be apt to become trouble
3. There is, too, another consideration. This
is not a case of mere arbitrary substitution of one
term for another. For the great majority of
persons, including many of our best etymologists,
are firmly of opinion, that the term, " God," is
tantamount, linguistically speaking, to " The Good."
If, however, the fact, regarding the etymology, be
not as is supposed, let the term chosen be if not
by etymology, by hypothesis, and express adoption
equivalent to the whole complex term constitut
ing the subject in such propositions as we have in
view. Then, having argumentatively compassed the
existence of The Good One ; we shall henceforth
employ the word in question as being simply
equivalent to that Good Being whose existence the
SUB-DIV. IT] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. G5
demonstration has attained to ; namely, The
necessarily existing Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity
of Expansion and of Duration ; who is All-knowing,
All-powerful, entirely Free, completely Happy, and,
also, perfectly Good.
4. The term chosen as substitute has, therefore,
the great virtue of suitableness. Other etymons
for the word good have been assigned by the
learned : not one of them, however, could have
been selected as an eligible substitute. But
the term chosen by us is, from its established
associations in men s minds, admirably adapted, in
every respect, for the situation it has been fixed on
5. In fine, in substituting " God," we are in
possession of a word expressive of an idea tanta
mount to the last predicate. The term conveys
the great attribute, the latest element, as yet, in
the demonstration. A Being, perfectly Good,
necessarily exists : that is, there is necessarily a
$ G. It will be understood, therefore, that, so
often as the term (rod shall henceforth be employed,
reference is always, though tacitly, nuide to this
1. Again, for the terms themselves, The Simple,
Sole, Bcirnj of Infinity of Expansion, and of
GG THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
Duration, who is All -knowing, All-powerful, en
tirely Free, completely Happy, and perfectly
Good ; or, for the neuter pronoun " it," as standing
for these terms, or so many of them ; a or, finally,
for the substitute noun on which we have fixed ; b
the word "He" shall, on every suitable occasion,
be employed to denote the same thing. Not that
there can be an intention to attach any idea of
specific sex c to the Being denoted by the more
noble pronoun : but the one word will be more
suitable than the other. To us, the inhabitants of
Great Britain, and, in general, the peoples who
speak our English tongue, it is more decorous and
reverential, and in every way becoming, to apply
the word He to the great d and good e Being in
question than any such word as it. Such the
genius and contexture of our language.
2. It need hardly be observed, that, in sub
stituting the more noble personal pronoun, in the
place of the impersonal pronoun " it," and its
cognates, we shall, of course, embrace, with " He,"
the cognates "His" and "Himself," in the sub
stitution. And for the justification of the
employment of "He," "His," or "Himself," in
every future instance of the use, we shall be
a As used, ex. gr., in Div. III. Prop. i. 3, & Sub-Prop. 4.
Vide tfcliol. pneccd.
c Confer Div. IV. Prop. ii. Schol. 13.
d Div. I. II. e Div. III. Sub-Div. i.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. G7
understood to make (it may be, silent) reference to
the sanction accorded by this Second Scholium of
these Scholia Prceposita.
God is necessarily True.
1. Viewed as an affair of language, the pro
position, God is True, may be taken in one or
other of two distinct senses. First sense : God is
True, may be held to mean, that He truly, or in
truth, or according to truthfulness, is God. So,
we say, or may say, "This is the True GOD."
Again : " Ye turned to GOD from idols, to serve
the Living and True GOD."
2. Second sense. God is True, may mean that
He acts truly, or with trueness, or truth, or truth
fulness. In this way, we may say, " Let GOD be
True, but every man a liar." Or, " He that hath
received His testimony, hath set to his seal that
GOD is True."
3. These two meanings are not only dis
tinguishable, but they are quite different, from
each other. Nevertheless, they may be (for they
have been) injudiciously blended, or more or less
4. Our English word, True, with its two
68 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
meanings, is alleged to be of Anglo-Saxon, and even
Gothic descent. And there is significance in the
fact, that the same sort of distinction is preserved
in the Latin adjectives, Verus and Verax. Of
course, it is only in the latter of those senses, that
our Proposition, God is True, is to be taken. The
Proposition in the other sense has been well, if
only virtually, elaborated, and, tis trusted, most
successfully established, in the previous portions of
1. Now, there is one thing involved in, or
rather implied by, this proposition, which must be
considered at the very outset. For we can
righteously advance not so much as a single step
without the aid of the supposition in view.
2. The supposition in question whether
expressed, or only tacitly understood ; for it is by
no means always necessary that a necessary
supposition should be formally expressed is, that
there are objects of God s Truth, objects in relation
to which God s Truth must be. This becomes very
evident on reflection : tis a position containing its
own evidence within itself. The notion of God s
Truth clearly implies that God has objects for the
manifestation of that truth. Without these, there
is palpably no place for the truth. No possibility
of its existence. God cannot act with truthfulness
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. G9
in relation to nothing. Tis, then, quite plain,
that the supposition in question is actually in
volved in our Proposition.
3. And this being so, the distinction of
absolute Attributes, and relative Attributes, has
been therefore brought, fairly and thoroughly, into
the field. Now, the distinction between an
absolute attribute, and a relative one, lies in this,
that the former expresses what God is in Himself,
or without relation to anything beyond Himself, or
His own Essence : while the latter, or a relative
attribute, expresses what God is in relation to
something which exists besides Himself, and be
yond Himself, as a creature, or, at least, as in some
way objective. If one wishes to study instances
of the purely absolute Attributes, choice may be
made among the predicates of former Propositions
in Divisions I. and II. of this demonstration.
4. Tis, therefore, quite plain, that in the Pro
position God is True, it is involved that there are
objects. But it is a totally different consideration
of what character the objects are. These may be
(observe, it is not said that they must be) creatures,
that is, Intelligent and Moral creatures ; for no one
with whom we will have to do will insult mankind
by contending that God can be considered Truth
ful in relation simply to mere Animal Natures,
destitute of intellectual and moral qualities. And
to speak of Truth in relation to the Vegetable
70 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
World, were lamentably out of the question : while
to talk of Truth as manifested to any portion of
the Mineral Kingdom, would be to suggest a sheer
impossibility, and to mock our understanding by a
shameless pantheistical absurdity.
5. The objects of the Truth in question may
possibly not be creatures like men. Nevertheless,
some persons would, doubtless, contend, that the
objects present to the mind, when we treat of God s
Truth, must needs be creatures like us. These
persons would assever, None but men, None but
men can be. We shall (they say) admit the
existence of no Intellectual and Moral inhabitants,
whether man-like, or angelic, i.e., having faculties
analogous to those of men, only higher in degree,
no inhabitants, we repeat, of any other planet in
our system or of our own Central Luminary or
of any other self-luminous Sun or Star or, finally,
of any other sidereal system among the countless
constellations, or larger systems, of the wide
Heavens. So decide these self-confident, most
rigid humanitarians. Narrow is their horizon :
within it, themselves the only visibles. But tis
enough to advance, in opposition to the tenet, that
only creatures that are men upon this earth can be
objects of God s Truth, that this tenet has not yet
been proved to be true ; neither has it been
rendered at all probable. a
a Vide, infra, Prop. IV. Schol. ii. 14.
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 71
6. But further : There are objects, indeed, of
God s Truth ; but whether the object be necessarily
conceived to be a creature at all, even this must
be reckoned to be an open question. A question,
however, on which we mean not at all to enter.
For, to do so, would involve the entering upon the
subject of the constitution, the internal constitu
tion, as it were, of the Godhead ; and it is, as a
matter of course, far removed from our present
purpose to investigate such a subject, especially,
if the investigation should naturally tend to bear
us to the deepest foundations, in our minds, of that
most profound of metaphysical topics.*
7. There is, then, to be supposed the other
than GOD, in proceeding to our demonstration.
And in treating of the other than God, we shall,
for reasons which may be gathered from the pre
ceding sections, cast out of the account all but the
intellectual and moral creatures. And, in the next
place, our view shall be, for the most part, if not
always, limited to man. For, should we, in any
place, speak of other creatures, or, in plainer
language, spirits with intellectual and moral
natures superior to man s nature ; we shall do so
as a matter of grace, or of mere hypothesis. \\ e
shall do so only for the sake of some illustration,
or for the mere purpose of widening the range of
our horizon. A statement, indeed, which may be
a Vide, infra, Prop. IV. Dem. 14, &c.
72 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
found to be more applicable to subsequent places,
in our demonstration, than to this place.
1. Let it be granted, not only that the other
than God exists as objective to Him, but that God
does, in actual deed, act, or make communications,
towards the other, the objects being men.
2. The Postulate now laid down for use in
this Proposition, shall expressly, or tacitly be
made to hold with regard to the immediately
ensuing Corollary, and the Proposition succeeding
it. But such postulation shall cease whenever we
shall have arrived at Proposition IV., under which
the postulated position shall change its character, by
becoming a proved point. The proof, too, will hold
with regard to each one of the three specified Pro
positions alike. For the evidence of all which, weigh
Scholium I. 1 9, of the Proposition referred to.
1. We come now to the demonstration itself
of the truth of our Proposition, God is necessarily
True. And to demonstrate this, in the exactest
manner, not a great deal will be required to be
2. For a mind to be true, is, to consciously
act as things are, and not as they are not. Tis,
in a word, to consciously energize in accordance
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 73
with the reality. Now, to act as a thing is,
requires no foreign element : but it does obviously
require the introduction of a foreign element, to
act as a thing is not. God, a Conscious Mind, a
in acting h as He is, to men as men, goes not
beyond the reality of things. But suppose it
otherwise : Suppose, to wit, God consciously
acting as if He were not what He really is, or as
if He were what He really is not ; and to men as
not being what they are, or as being what they
are not ; you thereby necessitate the introduction
of a supposition to account for this acting falsely.
Obviously, you require something out of God, and
beyond God, to account for His (presumed) con
scious falseness. His acting truly requires no
reason no reason certainly beyond the fact, that
God is God, and men are men. c Can an extraneous
reason be needed to account for God manifesting
Himself as God, or for God communicating with
men as being what they are ? Impossible. But once
say, that God acts as if He were not God, that is, as
if He were ceasing to be, or made to cease to be,
God ; and as if men were no longer men, but non-
human ; once say, in any form, that God acts
towards the other than Himself as if He were what
He is not, or as if the other be what it is not : and
you have, in the most decided manner, introduced
a Schol. under Part i. Div. II. Postul.
c Lemma, 7.
74 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
the necessity of the supposition of a foreign element.
And what foreign element can there be ? Most
evidently, there can be none. Out of, or beyond,
the necessarily existing Simple, Sole, Being of
Infinity of Expansion and of Duration, who is
All-knowing, All-powerful, entirely Free, com
pletely Happy, and perfectly Good, what can there
be to necessitate His acting falsely ? No such
foreign element can be assigned, or so much as
thought of, by the most unbridled imagination in
its very wildest flight. Tis plain, there can be no
being independent of that Being : None, therefore,
to cause Him to energize falsely.
3. But an additional absurdity would be in
volved by the introduction of the supposition of
such foreign element. There is no place for such
element But on supposition of it, a fresh absurdity
would come into the field. At all events, the
absurdity which there unquestionably is, will be
presented in a somewhat new, and greatly stronger
4. At this stage, we consider Falsity on its mere
intellectual side or simply as opposed to the True.
But under the future a Proposition concerning
Justice, the False will appear in its true colours, or
as the Immoral. Yet, although precluded from
occupying higher ground, by taking in the element
of morality, still Falsity, Falseness, Falsehood, of
a Viz. Infra, Prop. III.
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 75
any kind, and of every degree, involves imperfec
tion in the being who is false. Falseness can only
have a place in a nature defective in some respect.
Now, defect or imperfection cannot be supposed in
God. What defect or imperfection can there be in
that One Necessary Being, of utmost Simplicity,
who, being of Infinity of Expansion and Duration,
is All-knowing, All-powerful, entirely Free, com
pletely Happy, and perfectly Good ?
5. In fine, to suppose God otherwise than
True, that is, as acting falsely, were equal to the
absurdity of alleging, that the necessarily Un
limited One is, in point of fact, limited : most
limited too. For, no limitation can be greater than
that defect which would bring about the adoption
G. Thus, even as it is involved in the proposi
tion, that God is necessarily True, involved in the
proposition as what it essentially means ; so, it
has been rigorously demonstrated,
That God, as a Conscious Mind, acts towards the
other than Himself,
As if He is what He is, not what He is not.
As if the other is what it is, not what it is
To state the same thing otherwise :
God must manifest Himself as God. And
He must manifest Himself to Man as Man.
7G THK ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FUR [Div. Ill
Both relations being, at same time, preserved;
or, in other words,
God, as God, must communicate with Man,
as being what he is Man.
7. So, there is a sufficient reason for our
position, that God, in acting, must act as things
are ; and, therefore, we conclude, that God is
8. God, then, is, necessarily, the True.
COROLLARY FROM PROPOSITION II.
God, wlio is True, is necessarily Faithful.
1. A presupposition is implied by this proposi
tion, God is Faithful, in addition to the pre
supposition implied in the preceding proposition.
2. Faithfulness demands the positing of true
objects, as well as Truth does. a But Faithfulness
not only demands objects (specific and peculiar
objects, indeed), but itself, as subject, necessitates
the supposition of a thing, not, like a pure object,
beyond itself. For Faithfulness plainly can only
come to be exercised with reference to Promises,
Covenants, or Engagements of some kind. And it
is not difficult to see that all these are at bottom
one. A covenant, an engagement, an obligation of
a Preced. Prop., Lemma.
SUR-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 77
any description whatsoever, come under, or entered
into, by God, is just a promise in another form.
All the rest are resolvable into the first : Logically
speaking, the whole genus contains but one species,
3. As, therefore, there are relative attributes ;
among the relative attributes, this attribute of
Faithfulness is by no means the least relative.
1. In the proof of the Proposition, no great
measure of force will need to be expended. The
attribute of Truth being once established, the
foundations of the Faithfulness have been laid.
2. Indeed, Faithfulness, as an attribute,
implies not a great deal more than Truencss.
Truth is not Faithfulness, but the latter involves
the former, arid is neither more nor less than an
application, a particular application, of Truthful
ness. To be faithful, is to be something more than
being true, for it is to be true as to engagements
contracted. Faithfulness is simply Truth as to
3. As, therefore, tis so that Faithfulness holds
so directly of Truth, a separate and lengthily drawn
out demonstration is by no means necessary : such
might not even be expedient, since it would, or
might, have a tendency to obscure rather than to
enlighten farther. If a separate demonstration be
78 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
not absolutely necessary, such might serve the
same sort of purpose which works of superer
ogation do ofttimes accomplish : it might give
birth to the thought, that a mountainous diffi
culty ought to be removed, where, behold, all
is a plain already.
4. A Divine Promise, however, is a serious
thing. The Faithfulness of God is an attribute
which, more than many of the attributes, depends
on, i.e., implies as objective, the other than God : a
Nevertheless, the faithfulness in question is the
true heavenly archetype, or (should you object to
such form of words) the real archetypal ground of
every law which altereth not. God s Faithfulness
to a promise, is the God of Truth b Himself with
reference to a promise. A divine promise, once
made, is sure, yea unchangeable. A promise by
God, is God Himself promising. A divine promise
broken, would be God no longer God, and the
pledge of intellectual and moral chaos and
universal ruin. In fine, it is impossible for God,
having covenanted, to lie, because it is impossible
that God sliould cease to be.
5. We cannot hesitate, therefore, to maintain,
that the doctrine of the necessary Faithfulness of
God is necessarily sound doctrine.
6. So God, who is the True, is, necessarily,
" Lemma. }> Proposition II.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 79
God, who is True, and Faithful, is
necessarily Inflexibly Just.
1. If the preceding Proposition demanded
a great presupposition to be previously grounded, a
the present one equally, or much more, makes the
same requirement. If to manifest Truth, or to do
the Truth (as one saith), objects are required ;
to manifest Justice requires, no less, object* on
which the Justice is to be exercised.
2. And not to repeat at length considerations
advanced under that previous Proposition, the
objects presented to the Justice must be, or, at any
rate, shall be, considered to be men. They must
be so considered, taking the nature of the lower
animals, and all beneath the lower animals, into
account. And the objects of the Justice shall, or,
perhaps, must be considered to the exclusion of
angel-spirits, or any possibly existing higher
3. But it falls to be now noticed, that another
element, with special regard to one at least of the
factors, must be introduced. While the proposi
tion, God is True, regards, or may regard men,
simply as men ; the proposition, God is Just,
:i Prop. II. Lemma.
SO THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. TIL
regards, always regards, men in the farther light
Virtuous, or Un-virtuous, or
In other words,
Good, or Bad, or Evil ;
Righteous, Un-righteous. or
Moral, or Im-moral.
All the subdivisions
Truthful, &c. False, <tc.
A moral designation, therefore, is added to the
objects. The men are always considered to be
Virtuous, or Moral, or. on the other hand, Un-
virtuous, or Immoral.
4. The propriety of the introduction of that
new element will not be seriously gairisayed. To
be True, nothing more is required than to do as
things are, and not as they are not; and the
notion is complete without considering whether
the creatures, who are the objects to whom the
Truth is manifested, be good or be bad. But it is
different in the case of Justice. God cannot be
the Just God to men unless their moral condition
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 81
be taken into account. Justice, in fact, is a quality
having necessary reference to the deserts or merits,
and the demerits, that is, the goodness or the
badness, of its objects. Take away moral states,
and you obliterate the possibility of the exercise
5. There needs no elaborate proof of the
propriety of what is now advanced. Tis involved
in the propositions themselves, as the use of
language shows. No necessity can lie upon one to
prove that common language means what it means.
The use of language must proceed, no doubt, from
the source of the firm realities in the region of
absolute ideas, (the certain regulators they of
affairs in the sphere or plane underneath,) as an
effect involves the existence somewhere of its
cause ; a and the good use of language has fixed,
that to be True is different from being Just, and
that to be Just requires that there be some merit,
or some demerit, in each one of the objects.
Unless men be considered to be good, and bad,
they are not fit objects for the display of Justice.
Justice, in fine, has a distinct additional element
in it over and above that which Triteness of
necessity involves. Truth has to do with exist
ences simply : Justice, with moral existences only
G. The present Proposition, therefore, not only
a Confer, infra, Schol. III. 35.
82 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. 111.
relates to a relative Attribute ; but, if there be
degrees in relati\ 7 eness, this Proposition were more
relative than even the penultimate one.
$ 7. Our Proposition is tantamount, then, to
this, that God must be Just to men, as Moral
Beings. God is Just : that is, He acts towards
the good man, as being a good man : and towards
the evil or bad, as being so.
1. Now come we to the demonstration of the
proposition, that God is inflexibly Just, and that
necessarily. This is a proposition second to none
in importance, and the greatest care must be taken
that, to the keenest eye, no lack of cogency, or the
exactest accuracy, shall be discernible in our
2. We have already a adverted to the peculiarity
connected with the objects of this attribute of
Justice. Man is specially, if not exclusively-
regarded by it as a moral being. 31 A characteristic,
in truth, of the human race is Conscience. Every
genuine member of the family of man isdistinguished,
and honoured, and blessed, by the possession of this
admirable mental power. This it is which, even
more than his Intellectual pre-eminence, gives man
(the undisputed sovereign lord of all this kosmos]
Sue-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 83
his vast superiority over even the very highest of
the lower animals : this it is which most assimilates
man to every higher order of minds, more
especially to The Mind over all minds. a By this
Conscience, or Moral Sense, man approves or dis
approves of the actions of moral agents, praises,
or blames, the doers of the actions, good and ill,
recognises the one kind to be worthy of reward,
and the opposite kind to be deserving of punish
ment. The faculty, susceptibility, or power of
mind in question, has been called, by some philos
ophers, Conscientiousness : a good word enough,
perhaps, to express, distinctively, the thing meant.
3. The next point is : Is there convincing
reason for attributing to God such a quality or
property of mind as that denoted? In answering
which question, it may at once be fearlessly
advanced, that, as far as regards man, this faculty
of Conscientiousness is a most undoubted perfection.
Not only so : for Conscience asserts, and vindicates
in asserting, its rightful supremacy over the whole
man, as a Moral Being. It claims to be above all
the emotions, as well as all the passions, above
all the feelings, indeed, let them be called by any
name one likes ; and, above them all, Conscience
reigns as rightful absolute monarch. In fine, if
Conscience be no perfection, there is no perfec
tion in, or connected with, man. That man has
a Schol. Part iii. Div. II.
84 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
Intellectual excellencies or perfections, few will
dispute, and none can establish, since a complete
proof would itself denote a most unexceptionable
excellency of reasoning. But man s power to take
in intellectual truths in the pure mathematics
themselves, to discern, say, the relation of equality
between twice two (2 + 2, or 2x2) and four (4)
the comprehension of the simplest equation being
accepted as evidence of aptitude for the abstrusest
geometrical, or algebraical, calculations ; could yet
be reckoned as appertaining to no perfection of
man s nature, if the power to distinguish between
right and wrong virtuous action and unvirtuous,
to perceive merit and demerit, to award praise
and blame, and to distribute reward and punish
ment, accordingly, if such, we say, be no perfec
tion. But the power of mind under notice is not
only a perfection, but it is manifestly an original
and distinct perfection of mind. Indeed, this is
implied by the very nature of the case : For, how
could such a perfection grow from nothing, or
result from any congeries of powers destitute of
Conscientiousness themselves ? Twere ridiculous
to contend, that Conscience, rudiments and all,
could have been (not cultivated and improved, but
acquired) absolutely acquired by education ; for tis
but too obvious, that a conscience cannot be the
product of factors themselves wanting all conscience.
In fact, every genuine representative of our race
SuB-Div. TI.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 85
will admit yea, he will glory in the uniqueness,
and the lawful supremacy, of Conscience. Those
persons only who, malformed, or ill-constituted, as
individuals, are deficient, as to degree, in this grand
faculty, will seek to lower its claims, and represent
them as baseless pretensions. These individuals,
in speaking, may draw from their own experience
-in which they are most unhappy. But their
mishap must l>e corrected by the general verdict.
Taking in all the landscape, exceptional infelicities
are lost sight of by the large-minded spectator.
And tis well that it be so. In fine, Conscience in
the greatest of perfections in man s whole Intellectual
S 4. In the next place : It beins* to be taken for
o L O
granted, as a most certain truth, that Conscience
is a perfection ; wo proceed to consider the identi
fication of God as the ( )ri<nnator of man s conscience 1 ,
Himself the Conscience of consciences. Now, tis
to be noted, that there is an Axiom as sure as any
axiom, or any truth whatever, in any Science
whatsoever, even inclusive of the exact sciences.
The Axiom, so much to our purpose, is : An ejj cct,
qua effect, cannot possess any original, distinct,
perfection, which is not in the cause, cither actually,
or at least in a higher degree. It has been proved,
that man is a creature, 11 which is another way of
saying that he is an effect ; and to affirm, that man
:l Schol. under Part iii. Div. II.
86 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
is a creature, or an effect, is equivalent to the
affirmation that man has a Creator, or that (regard
being had to the nature of the proof) there is a
First Cause. Therefore, in the Creator, or Mind of
minds, qua First Cause, there must be an attribute
corresponding to this perfection, the Conscience to
wit, in man the creature, qua effect. For, no Effect
can possibly have a perfection which is not, in
some respect, in the Cause : Otherwise, the perfec
tion might be effected by nothing.
5. If any one should, by way of objecting,
urs;e that such arguing from man s moral sense to
O o o
the mind of God, is a posteriori; the reply is:
Granted, that an a posteriori element has been
allowed to enter here. But the continent of the
element the larger ground, in virtue of which the
entrance of the element became a possibility was
by no means a posteriori ground. The larger
point, that man is a creature, or an effect, and,
correlatively, that there is a Creator, or First
Cause ; the proof of this was sufficiently a priori.
Let it be remembered, therefore, of what nature is
the demonstration as a whole. The method which
has been followed, in the present instance, is of a
mixed character, but what of that ? The perfec
tion of this demonstration consists not in this, that,
from beginning to end, there are no a posteriori,
or purely empirical, elements to be found, however
diligent may be the search. Because, where man
Sue-Div. IT.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 87
is concerned, and is, indeed, a main factor, it is
impossible to be altogether without momenta
drawn from (what is called) probable evidence.
And any expectation that all such momenta would
be altogether absent, would be the height of
extravagance.* The very introduction into the
subject of Matter, as a thing to be reasoned about
Matter, which is the only and very God of the
Atheists, who must be presumed to lie ever in the
posture of hostile critics; Matter, we say, brings
with it a posteriori elements, if, indeed, Matter
itself be not to be regarded as an entirely empirical
existence. Certainly, Expansion and Duration, on
the one side, and Matter, on the other, do not fall
under the same category : Matter being admittedly
contingent in this, that we are not obliged, by the
constitution of our minds, to conceive of it as
always existing ; while, again, Expansion and
Duration exist to us as things the non-existence of
which is not possible. Besides, too : When we
shall have arrived at a succeeding Proposition, 1 it
will be seen that there is a special reason, of
a peculiar description, for the exceptional treat
ment of the Attribute under notice, the Justice, to
wit, of God. But the perfection of our demonstra
tion lies in this, that, in all the main features, and
specially as touching the Being, and the Absolute
Attributes of the Chief Factor, the method is
Confer, infra, Schol. I. 9. \"r:. Coroll. from Prop. III.
88 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
purely a priori, synthetical, deductive, abstract.
The perfection, too, of the demonstration, when its
final cause is in view, will (in fine) be found to be
in its being convincing, and irrefragable by any
objector. In these regards will consist the real
perfection of the demonstration : not in its having
received no aids, anywhere, from human observa
tion, or general experience, in matters relating to
man, and his to him most weighty concernments. 51
6. Upon the whole : Tis, therefore, clear that
in the Supreme Mind there is the Quality or
Property of Conscience. Reason shows, that God
is the Just God : Consciously Just. Justice is
most assuredly one of the Divine Attributes.
7. Tt being, then, established, that God is
Just, and it having been laid down (what is
sufficiently incontrovertible) that the just and the
unjust among men are the proper objects of God s
Justice ; b we are prepared to approach another
point in our extensive horizon, and edge off our
workmanship by an a priori finishing. God s
Truth and His Justice impinge upon each other ;
but they do not, for all that, coalesce. The Truth
and the Justice coincide, to a certain extent : so
far they go on the same road ; but, while Truth has
been proceeding in a wider highway, Justice goes
farther along the route. The fact is, that the Just
God acts towards moral agents according to their
a Confer -, infra, Div. V. Prop. i. 1C. b Lemma.
Sue-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 89
true states, that is, towards the good as being
good, and towards the evil as being so. This is,
~ O 7
however, in virtue, not of God s Trueness, but of
His Justness. This latter it is which specializes in
the common objects, men, fixing, exclusively, on
the moral principles of the nature. But, never
theless, God s Justice involves the Trueness. A
matter of moment, since a highly important con
8. Inasmuch as God s Justice is, indeed, little
more than His Trueness applied to the good, and
to the bad, as being, respectively, good and bad,
morally : The supposition that God is un-just,
involving that He is false ; as the absurdity of
God s being false has been demonstrated/ 1 the
absurdity of the supposition which would involve
that absurdity is also, at same time, made manifest.
For God to be false, were impossible : a Therefore,
the supposition of God being un-just, as implying
the same impossibility, were impossible also.
9. Again : For the Just God to act as if He
were not Just, or for God to act to the good as
if they were bad, and to the bad as if they were
good ; were to be (not only not True, i.e., False
but, moreover) un-just and im-moral. But the
simple supposition of God s injustice is so absurd
in itself, that no position can by any possibility be
more absurd. For, to suppose God to be unjust,
a Fupra, Prop. II.
90 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
were to suppose that God has need to be unjust ;
and to suppose this, would be to suppose a cause
without, or apart from, God, compelling Him :
and tis absurd, in the case of God, as we have
demonstrated His Existence, and so many of His
Attributes, 8 to suppose a cause, cib extra, or outside
Him, determining Him. In short, nothing more
absurd than, without reference to any other
absurdity, to suppose God to be necessitated, from
without, to act as He is not to be obliged to act
as He is not, to men good, and men bad, as being
otherwise than they really are.
10. Thus, there can be no reason why we
should suppose the possibility of God being unjust :
but there is sufficient reason why we pronounce the
impossibility of there being injustice in God.
11. We can have no difficulty, therefore, in
arriving at the conclusion, that God and Justice
stand to each other as necessary inseparables ; and
so we maintain, that God is necessarily of inflexible
12. Then, God, who is the True, and the
Faithful, is, necessarily, the inflexibly Just.
MAN, AS A MORAL BEING INHABITING THE EARTH.
1. Tis incumbent upon us now to enter upon
another part of our subject. We have noticed a
a See the Propositions in Divisions I. & II.
Sue-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 91
special clement which falls to be introduced when
treating of Justice, 8 - and we are arrived at the
place where we must take notice of an additional
element, one, too, of the gravest importance. The
former element was weighty in one respect : this
one will be seen to be so in another. The former
went to make up the idea of what Justice implies,
or what is Justice : and therefore it behoved to
appear before the demonstration. But it may
perhaps be, that the present element looks more
towards the consequences of Justice, than the con
stitution itself of the idea thereof: and, so, its
natural position is after the demonstration. Its
fit place is in our posterior analytics.
2. We have seen, that the Justice of God
implies that lie act to the good as good ; to the
bad, as being really bad. 1 But we now allege,
that the good man is, as such, naturally happy :
he is happy so far as he is good, or as the good
which is in him is uninterruptedly operative.
Analogously, the bad man, as such, is infallibly
unhappy, or, to adopt as plain a word, miserable.
Goodness or virtue, in short, implies happiness,
and vice implies misery, of a greater or a less
degree. God, therefore, must act towards the
good man as being a happy man, and to the
evil man as being a miserable man. And we
shall have an opportunity of observing how much,
a Supra, Lemma. * Supra, Demonstration.
92 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
of even tremendous significance, is involved in
these things. 51
3. It is, then, to be shown, that goodness in
men involves happiness ; and badness, unhappiness.
Afterwards, we shall attend emphatically to what
is implied in God acting to the good or happy man,
as being truly a happy man, and to the evil or un
happy man to be plain with you, the sinner as
being indeed an unhappy, yea a miserable man. b
Not omitting neither the consequences of such
action in the one way and in the other. At the
point indicated, the grand doctrine of Rewards and
Punishments will break in upon us ; and, in self-
luminous flashes of light derived from the source
of that doctrine, we shall have, at a certain point
in our progress, glimpses of the unutterable blessed
ness of heaven ; as well as be obliged to admit
within the scope of our gaze (although blasting
will be the vision) the lurid darkness of the horrific
damnation of hell. Such the dire necessity of the
4. Thus, we are to address ourselves, in the
first place, to the doctrine, that virtue involves
happiness ; and vice, misery.
5. Now, when we say, that the virtuous, or
good man is, as such, happy ; we mean, that this is
so according to the constitution and course of nature,
:i Vide, infra, Schol. TT. Sect. 13, 14 ; aliasq;
b Vide, infra, Schol. II. Atque, Schol. III.
SuB-Div. 11. j THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 93
the constitution and course of nature as experi
enced by us. But goodness is not the only thing
or cause in operation, in any case. As Conscious
ness testifies, and as Observation of others, and
Experience generally make plain, there is no man
thoroughly good, and that continually : and there
are other disturbing forces at work besides those
flowing from the man himself, directly, or in
directly ; voluntarily, or hereditarily. There are
other lines, some of them of course traversing
lines, besides the main line of life. All those
disturbing forces, from whatever quarter, being
resolvable into the evil that is in the world. And
the consequence of all this, the experienced, and
the admitted consequence is, that goodness is not
so much productive of, and attended by, happiness
simply, as it tends, always tends, to be so. Virtue,
so far forth as it is virtue, involves happiness, so
far as the virtue is singly operative. This length
we must indeed go. But the confusion which
there is in the actual world prevents us from being
able to go farther. Still, let it be believed, that
length is quite far enough from being a short way.
6. And, similarly, the same sort of thing holds
with regard to the opposite, unvirtuousness. As,
according to the constitution of nature, the good
man is happy, so, after the same fashion, the
vicious man is miserable, more or less miserable,
and he always tends to become so, and more and
94 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
more. But no wicked man alive is as evil as it is
possible he might have been, or may hereafter
come to be ; by reason if for no other reason of
the good, the great good, which there is in this
world of sense, with all its deficiencies : The good
will not allow the evil to be so evil, as, without the
good, the evil would assuredly be. The good is
always striving (such is its nature) to keep the evil
within bounds, and to lessen the effects, at least,
of its malignity. And the experienced consequence
is, that evil, or vice, is not attended by so much
misery as it invariably tends to produce. For the
same reason that is, this is the reason Sin, most
prolific mother, does not sooner bring about Death,
true, absolute Death. There are counteracting
agencies at work, which keep the whole of the
dreadful sin-brood in a sort of half-life, or lingering
death. It is only when Sin hath conceived, in a
completed way, that the dread monster-mother
effects the legitimate end, and bringeth forth
7. If there be any qualifications of the doctrine,
above-delivered, of Virtue leading to Happiness,
and Vice leading to Misery, any qualifications
other than have been already advanced ; these of
course should have a hearing. But it does not
appear that there are any other qualifications.
The subject might, indeed, be much drawn out :
many particulars might be brought in, in the way
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 95
of details. But besides the great fact of the
incessant conflict, the ever-waged battle, of Good
against Evil, and Evil against Good, and the con
sequent limits and constraints set by the one to the
actual progress of the other ; there cannot be
adduced any distinct consideration. In fine, how
can there be any qualifications but those denoted,
however dimly ? Apart from the limitations set
by The Good, and its kingdom, to the Evil, with
its shadowy likeness of a kingdom, and by the Evil
to The Good : what should hinder each working,
without let or hindrance, on and on? Good tend
ing always to happiness, more good and more
happiness ; evil tending always to evil, and misery,
more and more, without assignable end.
8. Those effects, namely, happiness and the
reverse, are, then, the natural consequences,
certainly the natural attendants, of Virtue and
Viciousness. And if any one will, the effects in
question might be designated Rewards and Pmtix/i-
ments. Happiness may, indeed, be said to be
the natural Reward of the good man ; as Misery
maybe said to be tin- natural Punishment. of the
9. All this which has been advanced is nothing
but an appeal to those facts with which knowledge
of ourselves, and external observation supply us.
A demonstrative proof, therefore, as it were out of
the question, so it is quite unnecessary. In truth,
96 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
we can demonstrate no fact regarding men : that is,
we cannot demonstrate, in the strictest sense ; we
can only prove in virtue of postulates.* There is
no more than one fact, in cell the universe, which
is truly strictly demonstrative, the fact, namely, of
the Existence of God. Nor can those statements
regarding human nature be supported by authority ;
because the facts are so, or they are so and so,
whatever any one may urge. Authority, as such,
would go for nothing. Yet, in a question, as to
any matter of fact, whether a thing be so and so,
or not, it is quite competent and pertinent to
adduce the testimony of those who are the best
judges of what is really the fact. It is quite
competent to produce witnesses, who could testify
as to what they have observed, in regard to the
matter in hand ; and it would be quite pertinent,
were the facts of the case doubtful. But they are
THE INDISSOLUBLE CONNECTION BETWEEN MORALITY AND
HAPPINESS, AND IMMORALITY AND MISERY.
1. Tis the case, then, that, by the constitution
and course of nature, the moral are actually happy ;
the immoral, the reverse. 13 This is true, but true,
however, with the conditions and qualifications
stated in the preceding Scholium. The imperfect
a Vide, supra, Dem. 5. b Schol. proceed.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 97
virtue which obtains among men tends to produce
happiness, while the actually existing vice, with
all its checks, has a tendency to produce unhappi-
ness and positive misery. So far as virtue operates
unimpeded, it has such a tendency : so far as
untrammelled vice extends, it has a tendency
drawing in the opposite direction, or to wretched
ness within and without the man. Such is indeed
the constitution and course of nature, as made
known to us by our own consciousness, and as
observed regarding others, in the way of daily
experience. The moral are, comparatively, the
happy : the immoral, the unhappy. Now, an
important immanent question awaits us here : Is
such constitution founded in the eternal fitnesses of
things, or not? is it intrinsically necessary, or is it,
on the contrary, purely contingent and arbitrary ?
Let us put it otherwise. Is it an inherent power
of virtue that it produce happiness ? and, Is it
inherent in vice to produce misery ? Or, Is the
reverse true ? And, Are the happiness and the
unhappiness merely arbitrarily superadded qualities
superadded, that is, by the arbitrary fiat, the
mere will or good pleasure, of the Creator ? a
2. But whereas the question, as put, does,
though secretly, yet really, distinguish between
the nature of the Creator, and His good pleasure,
or fiat, insinuating, too, that the nature and the
:i Scholium under Part iii. Division II.
98 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
particular will could possibly be disjoined and
disconnected : it is to be preliminarily observed
that the disconnection is impossible. This follows
from Proposition II., where it was proved that
God, the Creator, is necessarily True. Being most
Truthful, He must manifest Himself as He is ; He
cannot, therefore, reveal Himself by a fiat, declara
tive of a general law, inconsistent with the reality
of His character. God s fiat, in fine, must be but
the pure expression of Himself, as willing from, or
in accordance with, His nature.
3. This may be said to be an answer to the
question by objecting to it, by objecting to an
assumption radically contained in it, and by
raising a previous question. Nevertheless, it
appears to involve, in any view, an answer to the
interrogatory. It answers by a decided negative
as to the possible arbitrariness of any such fiat.
4. Thus, the course of nature determining that
virtue should produce happiness, and vice misery ;
it seems to follow, that the connection between the
virtue and the happiness, the vice and the misery,
is not arbitrary but necessary. That is, taking the
constitution of things as an expression of the will
fiat, if you prefer the word of God; it seems to
be evident that the constitution of things, which
fixes the connection in question, is unalterable.
The expression of will being grounded in the
nature of that God whose attributes have been
Suu-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTMBUTES. 99
demonstrated, is therefore unchangeable. The
essential attributes of God are immutable, if
5. But as the relation of virtue to happiness,
and of vice to misery, is an important subject ;
and it may be attended with good results to dwell
upon the character of the connection in question ;
let us consider the matter yet a little further, by
letting in new lights, and looking at the objects in
other attitudes. Let us, starting afresh, put the
question over again, while the ground of the
objection which was sustained is dropped out.
6. Is it inherent in virtue to be accompanied
by happiness ? and in vice to be accompanied by
the reverse ? Or, on the contrary, could virtue be
followed, as a matter of course, by misery ? and
could vice be followed, by reason of the same law,
by true happiness ?
7. Virtue leads, at present, to happiness ; and
vice, to misery. a IS ow, this human virtue of
whatever it may consist, i.e., of whatever par
ticulars it may be composed, or into whatever
elemental bases it may be resolved must be held
to be, generally, expressive of conformity to the
moral nature with which man is endowed ; while
vice, shortly, denotes departure from such con
formity. Next, the virtue, which is simply con-
100 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
formity to the true moral nature of man, must be
also allowed to be in conformity, so far, at the
very least, with the moral nature with which man
was originally endowed by his Creator; while the
contrary holds as to vice. This is just what is
meant by Virtue, or Morality; what, by the
opposite, Vice. This is just the virtue and the
vice about which the question asks : Otherwise, no
question can be legitimately before us, as at this
stage in our argument. We cannot logically
ignore now the supposition of God, the Creator of
8. This being so, the question before us
almost answers itself. In viewing human virtue
as a conformity, partial conformity it may be, to
the moral nature with which man was at first
endowed, it must view virtue as being, to a certain
extent at least, in conformity also with the nature
of the Creator Himself. How, then, were it
possible that virtue should not be followed by
happiness, since the Creator Himself is happy ? a
Could conformity, in a variety of ways, to the
Creator s own nature, lead to anything but some
thing else equally in conformity with the nature of
the Creator ? Could living as God would have us
live ; being, so, like Himself ; conduct but to some
thing like Himself? Could it possibly conduct to
anything unlike Himself? So, too, regarding vice.
il Div. III. Prop. i.
Suu-Div. II.] THK BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 101
This is disconformity to the true nature of man,
and, so, to the nature of God. How, then, could
it lead to happiness, or aught but the reverse of
happiness ? How could disconformity, in im
portant regards, to the God-like, lead but to some
other un-God-like disconformity ? Could the vice,
the unlike God, lead to happiness, the like God ?
9. Thus the question which was raised a is to
be met with a decided negative, approaching it by
the track pursued. But while throughout the
preceding, the elements of Virtue and Vice pre
dominated ; in what is to follow, certain other
elements will be the predominating ones.
10. The question, then, being looked at with
the element of Happiness, and that of Misery, its
reverse, prominently in the foreground ; it is
fortunate that we can, at once, answer, that any
alternative, such as the question presents, cannot
be entertained for one moment. The connection
between virtue and happiness, and vice and
misery, is indissoluble, being grounded in the very
nature of things which are themselves immutable.
11. The reason why the connection in question
is unalterable, is, because the supposition of aught
else were quite inconsistent with the nature of that
Supreme already demonstrated. He is, for example,
6, sub Jin.
102 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
necessarily consummately Happy/ 1 And, so far as
He produces anything like Himself, He must effect
creaturely Happiness, only creaturely Happiness. b
That is, by the constitution of things established
by God, the creature man, following the laws of its
highest or inmost being, must be happy. Un-
happiness is the un-like God ; unhappiness, there
fore, can only be the attribute of creatures unlike
God. There will be no dispute as to whether the
moral part of the nature of moral beings be the
main seat of happiness, worthy of the name, and
of unhappiness. True happiness, if not itself a
moral quality, is necessarily associated with moral
qualities. Perhaps it is an index to their state and
condition : the greater the true happiness, the
more the genuine moral qualities are in exercise.
Happiness, in fine, if not a moral faculty, is at
least a quasi moral faculty ; and it is certainly a
very important quality, whatever else it be. It
follows, that moral creatures, unlike God as to
happiness, presuppose a change to have taken place
with regard to them since the time of their being
created. Thus : Certain creatures are unhappy,
that is, habitually so. Being unhappy, they are
unlike God. A race of moral creatures, unlike
God, must in time have become so ; that is, they
must, in some way or other, have degenerated, or
become sinners. God cannot be supposed to have
a Div. III. Prop. i. J Sub-Prop, under Prop. i. Div. III.
SUB-DIV. 1 1.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 103
for creatures, the direct work of his hands, or
(should you object to the anthropomorphize
language) his own workmanship, beings unlike
Himself, opposed to Himself, in their moral
qualifications ; as this would involve an effect
without a cause ; or, rather, it would involve an
effect proceeding from an inadequate and impossible
cause, a thing, if possible, even more absurd than
the other. The creatures, therefore, as they came
from God, at their creation, must have resembled
God ; in other words, they must have been in His
image and likeness. They must have been, there
fore, happy. That is, as moral beings, with their
moral natures entire, and in legitimate exercise ;
which in other words is just saying, truly and
thoroughly virtuous beings ; they must have been
happy. .Being like God, being virtuous or innocent,
man (very properly we, under our present circum
stances, shall by no means be allowed to call him
the Adamic man] was necessarily very happy.
12. All this is, unless a huge mistake has
entered into the reasoning, a demonstration,
founded upon the nature, or the attributes, of God,
of the real connection which exists between virtue
and happiness, and, consequentially, between vice
and misery ; when one ascends to the source of
things, where, only, things at their perfection can
be seen. In the foregoing Scholium, the connec
tion between imperfect virtue, and imperfect
104 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
happiness, in man. as lie at present is, is stated as
a fact of experience : and herein we have been
greatly busied with an enquiry as to human
virtue and happiness as man must have existed
when he came fresh from his Creator s hands. To
this enquiry, the application of strict a priori
reasoning is quite practicable and legitimate. And
should any one deem it to be otherwise, in general,
or in particular, he has no more to do than put his
finger on the place where is the wrongness in
what is advanced. An objector has only to shew,
that a priori reasoning is totally inapplicable, or
point out wherein it has been positively misapplied
in the detail.
13. And now to enforce that for which much
of the foregoing is an excellent preparation. But
before proceeding in our course, we may take the
opportunity to make, or to repeat, an observation.
When certain expressions (such as, " a good man ; "
" a happy man : " "a bad man ; " an " unhappy,"
or a "miserable" man) and others coined after the
same fashions, are employed ; they are, of course,
to be taken in connection with their proper qualifi
cations. It cannot be deemed to be necessary to
qualify, on every occasion, propositions, or expres
sions, which have been qualified once for all. a
To return now to that which we were about to
a Scholium I. 5, 6 ; also, above, 1.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 105
enforce : Goodness and happiness are intimately,
yea, inseparably, associated ; as well as are the
opposites, badness and unhappiness. a When,
therefore, God acts in relation to a good man, as
such, He is in contact with a happy man. And
when God manifests Himself towards a happy man,
the man is, of course, made to be more happy.
The good man is naturally happy : moreover, he
necessarily becomes more so, in the case where
God, The Blessed One ( O Ma/capo?), 1 in acting, just
reveals or communicates Himself.
14. In like manner, when the consummately
Happy Being specially reveals Himself to a bad
man, the man, naturally unhappy, is necessarily
made to become more miserable. Just because, in
the case supposed, a Nature diametrically opposite,
and contrary, is in contact with the evil of the bad
man. It is, indeed, an awful thought but one of
the most pregnant with high consequences of any
which deal in the great concernments of moral
matters that the mere contact of goodness and
evil, where the goodness is over-powcringly
influential, should result in misery, or, rather, an
increase in misery, to the bad. But it is inevitably
so. Such is the constitution of things : and it
could not be otherwise. It could not be otherwise,
simply because God is God, and cannot cease to be
a Schol. I. preceding portion of this Schol. h Div. III. Prop. i.
THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
SCHOLIUM SUB SCHOLIO II.
1. One thing is now clear : Sinners have
a reason for hating God. Men who are conscious
of sinning against Him who is the True, the
Faithful executor of the laws of Nature, as being,
so far, but the outside expressions of His inner
Character, and to which, by once establishing them,
He has engaged to adhere, the inflexibly Just
One, rendering to every man according to his
deeds ; men, we repeat, who are conscious of being
sinners, may well hate God, because He increases
their misery when He draws nigh unto them.
Sinners, however, and Sin, are not the same, and
not everything which is true of the one, is true of
the other also. Inasmuch, then, as the domain of
Sin is intensified, and so increased, by the contact
of God with the nature in which Sin reigns, she
(if it be lawful to personify Sin) may yet be
imagined to rejoice herein. Sin, in becoming
more conscious to herself of her exceeding sinful-
ness, becoming enlarged, or intensified, by contact
with God, may be imagined to rejoice at this the
extension of her borders. Still, Sin, the monster-
mother of all human anguish, should she, in
portentous audacity, court for such reason the
thought of God, should also remember, that she
courts the contact of her bane : not wise, after the
pattern of the wisdom of the serpent, but foolish,
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 107
after the fashion of fatuous self-murderers, to allow
herself to be drawn within the vortex of that
mighty influence which shall at last be her inevit
able destruction. When Sin hath fully conceived,
by reason of her visions of God, her offspring will
assuredly be Death. And Death, once brought
fairly forth, will have an insatiable maw, maw
never to be satisfied until Sin herself, own mother
of Death, shall be consumed. And then his
occupation being entirely gone, and his subsistence
no longer possible, but thoroughly impossible,
Death himself shall die.
2. Therefore, it is pre-eminently sinners, miser
able sinners, who yet madly cry, in their hearts, to
God, Depart from us, for we desire not the
knowledge of Thy ways, who, as actuated by self-
interested motives, should desire the contact of the
Good One, even though He approach as the Just
God ; for in the increase, and the ever increase, of
their misery, lies the direction of the only door of
hope. For to have hope, the sinner must forsake
his way, and, as unrighteous, his thoughts, the
very thoughts however which constitute, as it were,
his radical nature, as his nature has come to be.
Then, indeed, repenting, or changing his mind;
ceasing to do evil, and learning to do well ;
becoming, in fine, a new man ; God can be the
O 7 7
Just God to him, and yet a source of blessedness.
3. But although the preceding be nothing but
108 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
what is legitimately consistent with doctrine deal
ing only in a priori principles ; alas ! neither a
priori principle, nor application of any a priori
principle ; no a priori reasoning, and, in fact, no
reasoning whatever; can tell how a man, being
evil, is, in consistency with the strict rules of the
attribute of Inflexible Justice, to be changed into
a good being : For this would involve a new
creation, and, so, it would utterly transcend the
region of purely Moral Law. Reasoning, not
ascending above the plane of this attribute of
Justice, can do no more than tell how the Just
God acts towards the good and the bad, the happy
and the unhappy, as such, and the results, in
accordance with the established course of nature,
in the first place, and, in the next, with the
constitution of things, as related to each other by
THE JUSTICE OF THE FUTURE.
1. It has been stated, a that Happiness may be
said to be the natural Reward of the good man,
and Misery the natural Punishment of the evil man.
This brings us, in a general way, to the great
topic of Rewards and Punishments. May it not
be said with truth, that, for us, men, and sinners,
a Schol. I. 8,aliisq_;
SUB-DIV. IT.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 109
(as we unquestionably are, on the supposition of a
God of Truth, a and of Justice, b who created us in
His own image and likeness, morally,) not the
least important subject falling to be discussed,
under this Proposition relating to God s Justice, is
this same subject of Rewards and Punishments ?
Or, might it not be said, with propriety, that the
doctrine of PUNISHMENTS, solely, is, for mankind as
they commonly are, the important matter in this
whole inquiry "? A form of the question which
would surely fit the topic more accurately to the
occasion, than one which introduced the subject
of REWARDS as an equally prominent element.
2. Connected, then, with the great subject of
Good and Evil, of Happiness and Unhappincss, of
Reward and Punishment, there is still a question
remaining for consideration ; a question yielding,
in importance and interest, to none whatever.
The particular subject is that of future Rewards
and Punishments, or, to express it more accurately,
Rewards and Punishments in a future state, if a
future state there be. And how are these Rewards
and Punishments of the future assumed to be
certain to be affected by that Inflexible Justice
3. There are, therefore, two great questions
before us for consideration in this place. Do the
premises to which we have acquired right, entitle
a Prop. II. Dem. preced.
110 THE ARGUMENT, A PKIORI, FOR [Div. III.
us to infer that there shall be a future state of
existence for man ? Such is the first question, and
the second is, What saith the Justice of God as to
the moral arrangements of the future state,
ascertained, and held to be certain ?
I. SHALL THERE HE A FUTURE STATE FOR MAN ?
4. Looking, then, in the direction of these
topics, we ask, Does the doctrine of the reality of
a future life, with its Rewards and Punishments,
belong in truth to the subject of Natural Religion ?
and, in particular, does the doctrine fall under our
a priori argument, appertaining, with perfect
propriety, to its procedure ? These queries deserve
to be answered in the most decided affirmatives ;
and it is to be remembered, that the affirmation
of the latter implies the affirmation of the former.
The general consideration of a future state of
Rewards and Punishments, does evidently belong
to the subject of Natural Religion, and, most
incontestably, the consideration does, specifically,
belong to the domain of the a priori Theology.
For, everything which undeniably follows from, or
is a strict application of, the Jlrst principles of our
Science, which themselves must be unimpugn-
able ; every such thing, tis repeated, is legiti
mately introducible, and, in a question of title,
must be allowed to remain, as lawful adjuncts,
SUB-DIV. 1 1.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. Ill
among the fitting accessory pertinents of the
principal theme. But tis not less than a duty to
make this whole matter level to the commonest
understanding. Of the most weighty concern
ments of every man we are directly treating at
this present ; and here, therefore, if any where,
the deliverance should be clear, and devoid of all
uncertainty or ambiguity. Tis a most serious
thing to consider the judgment of imperative
Justice itself. It behoves us, in sooth, to make the
matter quite plain to the dullest of intellects.
5. It has been demonstrated, that there is a
God of Truth, and of Faithfulness, and of Inflexible
Justice, and we have seen what demonstrations of
such a character do, of necessity, involve. To the
Justice of God, as the acme of the series, a there
must be now adjoined the facts made clear regard
ing man : to wit, that, to him, happiness comes in
proportion to his advances in virtuousness in
proportion, too, to the absence of traversing
influences, those, more especially, running quite
counter to the line of virtue ; while, in a reverse
way, unhappiness, or misery, is the unfailing
concomitant, and dread follower, of immorality and
active viciousness : that this is, because there
exists an indefeasible connection between these
things themselves, between, that is, the virtue and
the happiness, on the one hand, and the vice and
a Supra, Prop. III. Dem,
112 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
the misery, on the other. So that God, by simply
communicating with man, increases, by the
necessity of the case, increases, the happiness
of the good, and the unhappiness of the bad. a All
this has been made very clear ; and a considerable
portion has been matter of the strictest demonstra
tion, direct, or consequential.
G. It results, then, that, although the good
have their reward, they are by no means fully
rewarded, in this world. Nor are the wicked
adequately punished here. Often, indeed, they
seem to be hardly punished at all, certainly, far
from punished according to the measure of their
deserts, which, at times, are very great, the
iniquities (which are also sins) being appallingly
flagrant and rampant. What is deducible ? What
is the conclusion to which our consciences are
infallibly led ? Must not it follow, that Inflexible
Justice requires a future state in which all those
inequalities shall be rectified ? the rectification
doing away with all the confusion in which moral
existencies are enveloped and enclosed in this
present scene ? In fine, is it not necessary that
the Moral Governor of men (for a Just God at the
head of affairs in the universe, is, to all intents
and purposes, a Moral Governor) should accomplish
that which the heaven-bestowed Consciences of His
creatures cry out is necessary to be accomplished,
a Supra, Schol. II. , 13, 14.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 113
in order that the behests of irrepressible Justice
may be obeyed ?
7. In this world, and before our eyes, a
scheme of Moral Government is evidently
established, and, the operations being visibly and
palpably in progress, the plan may be said to be, as
a whole, in course of fulfilment, having attained
a certain amount of actual development. There is
a Moral Government, the principles and begin
nings of which are evident on all sides : will there
be no completion of the system ? Beyond all
dispute, there are discernible, in the present con
stitution and course of nature, the first principles,
and the commencement, of a scheme of government
carried on by moral means working to an end
consonant thereunto : Is it now a possible
supposition, that the undeviatingly Just One
should stay the initial operations by a fiat of, No
farther? that the Supreme, denying Himself,
should go contrary to His own plan, or that He
would allow His purpose to fall, through desuetude,
into complete and final inefficacy and abortion ?
8. Would not such inetficacy and abortion
amount to a direct breach in the integrity and
continuity of things ? Would not it amount to an
actual positive violation of the Veracity, and Faith
fulness, and Justice of the Universal Ruler ? There
are laws of Nature established by Him, and they
encompass us before and behind, and 011 all sides :
114 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
but none is more weighty and abiding than the
moral laws written by His finger on and in the
hearts of His intelligent creatures, whereby they
are obliged to infer, that in consonance with
the present experience, and with the past, since
the earliest records of man upon the earth, in con
sonance also with the unmistakable aspirations,
and not-to-be-suppressed yearnings, of our natures
projecting themselves, as twere, into the antici-
patingly realized future ; to infer (we repeat)
that there shall be a time of complete reckoning
for the just, and for the unjust. For the just
among men, in order that they may receive the
due reward of all their difficult and painful
strugglings, through so many toilsome days, after
perfect conformity to the Will and Character of
God, their Maker, and for the unjust, that they,
arraigned before the universe, may receive the
recompense of their unrighteous deeds too often
cruel deeds, committed at the expense of the
suffering of their more righteous neighbours.
9. As a legitimate conclusion from our premises
(sure as these are) it is, therefore, a matter of moral
certainty that there shall be a future state for man :
and a future life is the foundation of all human
hopes and fears of any considerable weight. No
wise person ever thinks of laying down grand
plans with reference to a casual residence in a road
side inn, to be left behind whenever the journey
SUB Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 115
towards home sliall be resumed. A wise man
reserves his fine architectonic devices, and measures
of general amenity, for that permanent abode
where all that he most loves is to be found abiding.
II. How SHALL JUSTICE BE ADMINISTERED IN THE
10. Taking for granted, therefore, that there
shall be a future state of Rewards and Punish
ments, Rewards for the righteous, and Punishments
for the unrighteous or wicked ; we proceed to the
remaining portion of our undertaking, and ask,
How does the inflexible Justice of God stand in
relation to the future life ? How are we to apply,
in a particular way, to the denizens of the
kingdoms beyond the grave, the doctrine that God
is inflexibly Just ? The point has, indeed, been,
to a certain extent, anticipated by the foregoing
observations. We found, that God s Justice, and
man s earthly condition, being conjoined, a valid
practical proof emerges, shewing that a future
state must be inferred. At present, our business
lies with the future world as our postulate, and we
are concerned with the moral administration which
shall prevail in that world. That is our datum :
this, the qucBSitum.
11. In grappling with our subject, the solution
of whatever difficulty there is, or may be imagined
to be, is to be found in the circumstance that there
116 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
is no radically and essentially new element intro
duced into the case put, except the (assumed) fact
of the existence being after the death of the body
on earth. Now, the introduction of this element
of mere continuance of the life of men cannot
disturb, in any way, or to any extent, the applica
tion of the rule valid for the Inflexible Justice ;
that is to say, the application, to the same objects
as before, substantially the same, of the same rule.
12. It must be plain to every mind, that the
strict Justice of God is the same this year as it was
the last year, and as it will be the next year, and
for ever. The Justice is the same now that ever it
was ; and it will be for ever the same as it is now.
Mere continuance, any amount of perpetuity one
likes to imagine, of existence of the objects, can, of
itself, make no difference in the application of the
regulating principle. And, by hypothesis, the
continued existence is the sole new element in the
13. The law, or rule, is :
The inflexibly Just God acts towards
Good, who are also happy, men, as being, in
reality, good, and happy, men ; and towards
Evil men, who are likewise unhappy or miserable
men, as being, in truth, such. b
Now, no difference can arise when the scene for
the display of the Justice is in one state of being
a Sect, preced. b Supra, Dem., & Schol. II.
Sun-Div. IT.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 117
rather than in another ; is in word it this way,
if you please the spiritual world rather than on
this earth ; the future world, as contradistin
guished from this world, at any rate. The
Inflexible Justice of the Supreme, which renders
to every man according to his works, proceeding
from the state of his mind, cannot alter itself, nor
submit to alteration brought about from without,
even if causes for alteration could exist, as they
cannot ; a and the objects presented to the Justice
being the same, to wit, good and blessed men here,
and bad and miserable men there, the result is the
14. The result is the same. The good are, in
consequence of the manifestation of God, in His
Justice, to them, made to be more happy ; and the
more manifestation, the more blessedness : While
the evil are, by the same means, ma.de to become
more miserable, ever more miserable. And so on
with regard to both classes of men, without
determinate end. 1
1 5. But tis time that an objection, which may
not unnaturally occur, should be favoured with a
hearing. An objector, then, might urge the
following. Has not one important point been
omitted ? Is there not an additional element, of
great weight, to which, as yet, no allusion has
been made ? Is it not true, that this life is a
a Supra, Dem., Sect. 9. b Schol. II., 13, 14.
118 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
state of probation, of trial, and of discipline, the
future life being one, not of probation at all, but
of retribution, full and final retribution : and is
not this vital difference between the two states
a matter of the very highest moment, the considera
tion of it being quite indispensable in the rendering
of an answer to the question which has been
16. No doubt can be entertained about the
importance of the point, but a doubt may be
entertained about the entire novelty of the same.
If you take the additional element, as suck, to the
problem, it will, doubtless, be contained in it, and
must go along; with it. But what if the element
pre-existed in the problem before this handling of
it as a distinct thing ? With great propriety is
the mooted point to be weighed : the only doubt
concerns its existence beforehand, in the matter
which has been before the reader.
17. The essential of a state of future retribu
tion, as distinguished from the present scene, where
men are upon their trial, is, that, in that future, all
the checks, impediments, and limiting conditions
of all kinds, will be removed out of the way. So
that virtue, or goodness, will reap its full reward
in unalloyed and perfect happiness : while vicious-
ness, as a permanent disposition, no longer counter
acted by direct or immediate influences from the
kingdom of The Good, will be allowed to meet
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 119
witli the extremest punishment in the dire misery
which is the necessary consequent, no less than the
appropriate accompaniment, of vice let loose with
out restraint. This representation appears to be,
in all its parts, correct. But it only shews, that
the administration of the Divine Justice will go on
without the limiting conditions which restrained
its exercise, and were hindrances to its complete
manifestation, on earth. In fact, the representa
tion quite harmonizes with the whole course of the
argumentation pursued throughout these Scholiums.
The element, which has been made prominent by
being singled out, was latently it may be, but
yet really and truly, in the premises, and the
conclusion, which had been previously submitted
to the critical reader.
III. SHAM, FUTURE PUNISHMENT BE ETERNAL?
18. Answer has been returned to the query,
How, there being a future state, how shall Justice
be administered therein 1 But, after all, there is
no denying that the real gist of the inquiry relates
more to the hidden import, than to the precise
form, of the words in which the inquiry is embodied.
In all probability, the questioner does not ask, or
care, so much about the nature of the future
Rewards and Punishments, as he would ask, and
is naturally curious, about the continuance of the
Rewards and Punishments ? Shall they last for
120 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
ever and ever ? It is of some importance that no
miscarriage should take place in conveying these
things. A rash inconsiderate critic might be
ready to come to an erroneous judgment, simply
because he had laid hold of the wrong premises.
Let this, therefore, be impressed on the reader s
mind, that our precise question, at the present
moment, is, Are the natural, and consequentially
necessary, Rewards of the righteous, and the
natural, and consequentially necessary, Punish
ments of the evil or wicked, in short, are the
complete retributions, whatever these may be, to
continue in the future state ? are they, indeed,
to endure coeval with Duration, and coexist with
19. But at this stage, and for a sufficient
reason, (the goodness of the reason will be apparent
by and by, a ) we may drop out of view one of the
two constituent data of the subject-matter, which
we have hitherto carried along, imbedded in our
interrogation. As we have been asking about the
Rewards of the Righteous, as well as the Punish
ments of the Unrighteous, about the former as
much as about the latter ; so, we may advantage
ously let go our hold now of the former of these
topics, the Rewards of the righteous or good,
and confine our attention to the latter, the Punish
ments of the unrighteous or bad. It shall suffice,
a Vide, infra, Prop. IV. Schol. iii.
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 121
that, in what remains of this Scholium, we adhere
to that latter topic alone, and exclusively. Treat
ing, then, of the Punishments of the wicked, we
ask, Shall these be continued without end ?
20. Without end ? Without end, in truth,
should you lay down that the men, the bad men,
have no end. But if your position were, that the
men had an end ; then, the natural, and consequen
tially necessary, punishment would, of course, have
an end too. How could it be otherwise ? But
what ? shall the men, then, themselves have an
end, or shall they continue in existence forever?
Of course, their punishment cannot go on without
the men as subjects of inhesion : but as to the
continuance perpetually of the men, themselves,
the bad men, how is it?
$ 21. Justice cannot tell. She can mve no
dogmatic, apodeictically certain, reply. This
attribute must admit, tbat the ground for a
confident answer is not in her. Justice can, in
fact, throw no light, not the faintest ray, upon
this topic. If we want more light let in, we must
be humbly and gladly ready to receive, and admit,
rays coming from above, coming through a sky-
lightened window, exposed to another region of
the heavens above us all.
22. An ample light shines around us at the
point where we stand, illumining things to a
122 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. I IT.
certain distance ; hut beyond the limit within
which the full light is confined, all is obscure, a
faint light only being discernible in rare directions,
at a few favoured spots. Endeavouring, to the
best of our power, to cast our eyes in the direction
of the more luminous portions of the region which
is beyond the space of the clear light, and fixing
our gaze intently on the partially enlightened
places ; let us note, and set down carefully, the
result of the experiences.
23. Shall those dread Punishments be without
end ? Justice, by herself, cannot tell. Justice
alone, in answering such a query, and speaking
with a voice of authority, can do no more than
pronounce what the rule must be : the punishment
shall be adequate, or proportionate to the wickedness.
But if it be assumed, or subsumed, by the questioner,
that there shall be no such proportionateness,
namely, no proportion, to the wickedness, in the
measure of suffering, and, so, punishment, borne :
this would involve, or plainly be, an outrage on
all the requirements of Justice. The intenseness
of the misery, or the punishment, shall be propor
tioned to the greatness of the wickedness : other
wise, things are made to run counter to the
elementary principles themselves of all which this
unbending attribute demands.
24. In this connection, it may be noted, that,
while every act of wickedness (a life of wickedness
Sun-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 123
being merely the sum of so many wicked acts)
should be punished by an adequate, or propor
tionate, i.e., measurable amount of suffering; end
less suffering would appear to be, very plainly too,
measureless, or incommensurable suffering.
25. Two things, indeed, go to make up the full
idea of adequateness in suffering and punishment,
so that nothing can be added to the notion of
adequacy to make it more complete. The first
element, is, intensity in degree in the suffering ;
and the second, is, the length of time during
which that degree of suffering is to be endured :
and the two elements are to be added, or multi
plied, together, in order to the production of the
completed compound of misery, and punishment.
But if, for one of the constituents, or any assigned,
or assignable, period of time, you put in, as an
ex >o.s facto coefficient, endless duration, you
thereby render the process of calculation, as to
26. One thing, however, by way of a qualify
ing observation, deserves to be attended to, while
we are discoursing, perhaps glibly enough, con
cerning the endless life of contingent beings,
who, besides, are sinners. Let it be borne in
mind, then, that the intensity, that is, of suffering,
is, to Justice, the chief ingredient, among the
elements, or in the product; length of time, or
continuance of the suffering, being merelv the
124 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
adscititious accessary. And you cannot, with
deference to Justice, suppose that, by prolongation
of the time of suffering, the due measure of
intenseness may be withdrawn, the adequate
degree of intensity in the suffering being justly
compensated for by that prolongation.
27. But, at this point, an objection may
possibly be started. The natural, or conse
quentially necessary, Punishments of wickedness
consist in sufferings, or miseries, proportionate to
the wickedness itself, the effect being according
to the measure of the potency residing in the cause.
Justice, however, can award suitable punishment,
for the wickedness, to the doer of the wickedness,
only while he lives. Is it not, therefore, within the
province of Justice to take all possible, or requisite,
care to prolong life, in order to render the criminal
capable of enduring the due amount or for the
specified number of days, or months, or years of
so much minimum in suffering ? True : yet only
so far. In the case of human Justice, the principle
of the representation may be allowed to be un
28. In the case, however, of the Divine
Justice, which possibly may be concerned with
myriads, or millenniums, of years of suffering, or
punishment, the representation is defective, and
the principle animating it is even untrue. The
Supreme Judge who appoints the retribution, runs
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 125
no risk of losing the object of Divine Justice
untimeously ; because the life of the object, and
the retribution, do both depend on Him who has
decreed the one not without equal reference to the
other. In fact, such a difficulty as the preceding
is only applicable to a human legislator and judge,
who has no power of making his sentence, and the
existence of the criminal, be bound up together, in
one indissoluble connection. The Divine Law
giver, and Judge, however, punishes by natural
laws, self-acting, and self-enforcing, or by infliction
of connected sufferings, intense in proportion to
the degree, or measure, of evil done : and all
eventualities are alike provided for, and made to
be mutually inter-dependent, by the original
decree. No danger that any criminal will escape,
by putting himself out of the way, in the case of
this Judge, and Executor of this law. In fine, the
O * 7
objection, drawn from, and misapplying, one of the
ingredients in the compound giving the full notion
of complete adequacy of suffering ; forgets, at least
the maker of the objection forgets, that the one
element (that, the non-essential element) cannot
be can, to no extent, be substituted for the
other. Indefinitely prolonged time cannot be
substituted for a certain amount of intensity in
suffering. A certain high degree of intensity in
suffering is, as the sign and representative of a
certain measure or amount of criminality, a definite
126 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
and fixed quantity which can never be superseded
by substituted time, be the time ever so long.
29. But here we are reminded, once more,
that, though a full light illuminates certain places,
that light finally borders on the most profound
darkness, with only regions of more or less un
certain vaporous gloom, interspersed with partial
and fitful irradiations. We were speaking of the
adequacy of punishment, in the guise of Buffering,
and specially of the main ingredient intenseness ;
and we had been remarking, that the intensity
could not be abolished, and the vacuity filled up
by a substituted prolongation of the time of suffer
ing. Nay, it seems to be a law of suffering,
applicable, therefore, to all suffering, that, the more
intense suffering becomes, so much the nearer the
sufferer is to extinction. We are familiar with the
workings of this wide law in our little, and low 7 ,
sphere. Some of us are only too familiar with the
workings of the law. But for the benign anaesthetics,
exemplifications of the law might be seen, any
hour, in domestic hospital practice. Pain, carried
up to a certain point, causes fainting, and utter
insensibility, to ensue. And, in like manner, with
regard to more purely mental suffering, namely,
sufferings from moral causes : Inflict measure upon
measure of calamities, growing worse and worse,
upon a man, and (unless a miracle shall prevent)
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 127
the necessary consequence is, madness, or delirium
in some form, or stupor, and accompanying in
sensibility. No kind of suffering can be continu
ally laid on and increased, without incapacity for
farther suffering being induced at length. This is
one of the ways by which kind Nature, the outside,
or ultimate, of God, shews her pity and active com
passion for her children, when the cup of human
distress has been filled to the brim, and runs over.
The blessed anaesthetic, producing insensibility to
pain, if not utter unconsciousness, is a resemblance
to the operations of Nature herself, in that the
copy effects that very insensibility to over great
a.fonv which the original, and greater cause, had
O , O O
before pointed out (only men were blind) as
the fit amelioration in the case of extremest
30. The reason of that merciful law is pro
found, and yet the evidence of its existence will be
convincing. It should be observed, however, that
we must keep in mind, beforehand, the original
and most intimate connection between sin and
suffering, whereby so much suffering indicates the
existence somewhere, and in some form of so
much previously contracted sin and guilt, the
unfailing precursors, they, of the co-relative : A
truth which, in the present connection, must by no
means be lost sight of. A good man, then, has his
face turned to God, who, as the highest or inmost
128 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
Sun, and the Sun of suns, a the great focus-centre
of all attractive power, is the life-giver ; and, so,
the good man is in the way of receiving life-in
fluences. But a bad man is he who has his face
turned away from God, and the bad man, his back
to God. is always withdrawing farther, and farther
from Him who is Life, and the life of the world ;
and, so, from the source of all life-influences goeth
the man, his atmosphere becoming more and more
darkened, and chilly, and inimical to all health and
life. Consequently, the evil man is ever drawing
nearer to death. He is a living thing, in the
course of evanescing;. Now the law in view seems
to be a necessary law of dependent moral being :
which nothing; can counteract but a miraculous
intervention to sustain, by supplying, life contrary
to that moral law.
31. When, therefore, the incorrigibly bad
man s positive wickedness, as the cause of a
diminishing series, and his proportionate sufferings,
at the head of another series of diminutions, shall
be added together, or multiplied together ; what
an abundance of the causes and circumstances,
tending to extinction of being, will be at work to
increase the fearful stock !
32. But it may be urged, in the way of
a Confer, infra, Prop. IV. Schol. i. 10.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 129
objection, that the law referred to a is a law but for
man s body, or, at most, for man as existing in this
temporal scene. When the blood recedes suddenly,
and in undue quantity, from the brain, the person
who has received the accession of agonizing pain,
or the agitating mental shocks, becomes pale,
feeling-less, and faints right away. But this is
merely by virtue of a law applicable to the
corporeal system applicable to the corporeal
system, and limited to it. And so of all the other
particular phenomena, whether the exciting and
proximate causes be strictly corporeal, or more
purely mental. All the causes are inert, until they
reach to, and operate on, the nervous system, or,
rather, centre, and the terminus of the cranio-
spinal axis, the white and grey medullary and
cerebral matter. Such is the medical, and, so,
fittingly technical, objection, and, as materialistic,
it is one of a class common enough, and very old.
If, therefore, the reply to the objection should be
of an ancient, and characteristic nature likewise, it
need not surprise any.
33. Tis admitted, that there is such a law for
the body, admitted, happily, on both sides ; for
the existence of the law, as applicable to man s
material frame, was exactly that which the objec
tionable, or (by your leave) objected-to section 1 *
had been trying to enforce. But tis verily another
a Supra, 29. b Ibid.
130 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
point, whether the law be applicable to the human
body, in the sense that it has no wider applications,
and that it is not founded on profounder and more
enduring realities, appertaining to the region of
a higher, and more potent causation. This, indeed,
raises another question, to which, therefore, tis
riofht that we now address ourselves.
34. The law applies to the human body. But
does not the law, as it is, adumbrate a more interior
law ? or, rather, does not that outside working, on the
plane of ultimates, shadow forth, that, archetypally,
there is a more Universal Law, of which the time-
manifestation is only the external exponent and
35. Now, in answer, let us consider the follow
ing. Things on the earth, if made, and regulated,
by a Contriving Mind, (and that this is so, is, at
this point, our postulate, and no matter of
question,) earthly things, we say, must have been
made according to a plan, or after a pattern : there
must, therefore, be, in the higher sphere of causes,
the models, of which the earthly objects and effects
are the resemblances ; and according to the laws of
these causes, the earthly operations are conducted
and go on. The earthly images may be affirmed,
or may be denied, to be the representatives of the
most real and ever-enduring archetypal ideas:
but certain it is, that, whatever be the names by
which these likenesses are designated, the causes
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 131
of them must have pre-existed in, or been present
to, in some special manner, the Divine Mind, which
was the depository of the model-thoughts, until
they \vere actualized in this lower theatre. Tis
from the very nature and intrinsic necessity of the
case that this should be so. Postulate a Divine
Mind, the creative cause of men, and of all earthly
things : the men, and all their surroundings (and
the mental constitution, and the corporeal system
of man, cannot be permitted to be overlooked in
such a circumstantiating) become matters of the
utmost moment, not, for an instant, to be forgotten.
But all these are ultimates, in the world of effects ;
and not one of the general laws which rule
substances, and all operations here, can be without
its representative in that higher world of causes,
where the real and abiding exemplars exist : where
they must exist, else there could have been no
manifestation, in time, of things on that plane of
ultimates, which is, now and here, their continent. a
36. What is the nature, or what are the
characteristics, of that higher law, to which those
phenomena of Man, and of Nature correspond ; is
a question which, in many regards, would be a
most difficult one to solve.
37. It may be, that to pile agony on agony,
ceaselessly, upon a man s body, or upon a man s
soul, upon a man, at any rate ; is impossible,
a Confer, supra, Lemma, 5.
132 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
regard being bad to that finite nature, by which,
and within which, man is necessarily environed
and confined. A finite spirit cannot bear the
weight of agony, infinite in any respect : this
appears to be clear and certain. The two things,
a creature, to wit, and infinite agony, seem to be
incapable of approximation, far less, of junction.
The two factors would obstinately refuse to be
blended, and wrought together. Possibly, this is
the nearest approach which it is permitted us to
make to the solution of that awful mystery. How
much torture, keeping within the bounds of finity,
can a human being, a pure spirit, or a spirit
clothed with a body, it matters not, endure, and
be yet consciously alive ? this is that Secret
profounder than the Sphinx s riddle, and more
terrible than aught save lowest Hell which may
Heaven s pity and compassion never allow to be
solved in the person of any mere son of man !
38. Finally, Our immediate topic has through
out been a definite one. It was this : So far as
the single attribute of Justice is involved, (for
with that sole attribute we were concerned,) How
about the Rewards of the Good, and the Punishments
of the Wicked, in the future state of existence ?
How shall the Divine Justice be exercised there ?
Is the natural, and consequentially necessary,
Punishment of the Evil, as well as the natural, and
Sus-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 133
consequentially necessary, Reward of the Righteous,
to continue in the future state for ever and ever ?
39. There is, however, another, a far wider,
and, probably, more deeply interesting, question,
awaiting decision ; although it might, with some
truth, be said, that the question which has been
before us concerned us all the more that we were
obliged, in strict logical procedure, to pass over,
here and now, the wider, and more interesting
topic. The new question is this : So far as God,
with all His attributes, including, of course, yea
pre-eminently, His perfect Goodness, harmonizing
with His consummate Happiness, (these two
animating mutually, and animated by each other,)
the very Attributes from the activity and action of
which the creation itself of men arose : we say,
taking into account all the Attributes of God-
specially, those concerned with calling the men
themselves into being, What about the Reward
of the Good, not forgetting the Punishment of the
Bad, in the future state ? How will God act
towards them in the eternal world ? Will the
natural, and the necessary, Rewards, and Punish
ments be for ever, or to all eternity ? This,
indeed, is a question very different from the other
interrogatory, different as to stand-point, and in
all the circumstantials. It will fall to be answered
in another, and a more fitting place. a And as the
a Vide, infra, Prop. IV. Schol. iii.
134 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
questions are so very different, it is possible that
the replies thereunto may turn out to be as
different as are the questions themselves. Possibly,
too, as the latter of the two may deserve to receive
a different answer from that due to the other, so
the answer itself appertaining to the wider and
profounder question, may be found to be more
worthy of all acceptation, acceptable, in sooth, as
cold water to a thirsty soul in a parched and
COROLLARY FROM PROPOSITION III.
God, who is True, and faithful, and inflexibly
Just, is necessarily altogether Righteous.
1. It has been demonstrated, that, making
certain pre-suppositions, God is the Inflexibly Just
One. a Now, to be just, is unquestionably to stand
in a certain relation to the other. But justice, in
act, must proceed from a capacity of being just : in
other words, justice points back to a principle,
or a something in the mind distinguishable from
the justice itself. The act must be regarded as the
consequence of the capacity, or (if you object not
to the term) the faculty. Most decidedly, and
most specially, is this the case with respect to
God, as the Supreme Mind, absolute in Himself.
If He be just to His moral creatures, there must
a Preced. Prop.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 135
be considered to be in Him a mental principle, as
a something other than the justice itself, considered
as act ; the act proceeding from the faculty giving
birth to it.
2. Now, what is the absolute principle in the
Divine Mind which gives birth to the justice, on
supposition of the existence of the suitable objects,
and of communications therewith ? Absolute
Justice it cannot be, because, Justice denoting
necessarily relation,* the terms, "absolute justice,"
are expressive of an impossibility, or rather
absurdity. In reality, there can be no Justice
but one sort. All Justice is necessarily relative
to its objects, its own objects. Unrelative
Justice would be a chimera. In fact, not a little
nonsense has been vented, both in this region.
and in the approaches to it, or byways from it.
Alas ! it is quite possible to utter nonsense on
almost any topic.
3. No error, however, will be fallen into,
should we denominate the absolute principle in
question by the name of Righteousness. With
all correctness we may say, that there is in God,
as absolute in Himself, the principle of right,
rectitude, or righteousness; from which absolute
principle proceeds, on occasion, justice as act,
whereby God exercises the strictest justice to His
Intelligent, Moral creatures.
a Prop, preced. Lemma.
136 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
4. We conclude, therefore, that there is in
God an absolute principle of Kectitude, or
Righteousness, by reason of which He is, ever and
necessarily, determined towards that which in
thought is, in itself, right : No matter, whether
the thing thought of be a purely abstract concep
tion, or be a thing leading to positive acts in
relation to the other.
5. The unalterable Rightness of the Divine
Nature, which we have arrived at by the course
actually taken, which we may admit has been
forced on us by the progress of our ratiocination ;
that unalterable Rightness, or Rectitude, we say,
might have been demonstrated otherwise. The
truth in question might have been proved, in the
most strictly logical manner, by considerations
withdrawn from any notions of Justice as a
positive series of relative acts : and the student
who shall diligently weigh the elements of a
demonstration to be found in our Fourth Di vision , a
will not be far from a perception of a mode of
proof by which the Absolute Rectitude, here as
well as the Ineffable Moral Purity, there might
be most satisfactorily established.
6. In fine, absolutely speaking, the Divine
Being must be Righteous. But, as logicians, we
dare not, at this point, make a stronger affirmation
respecting the relative act than that God must be
a Vide, infra, Div. IV. Prop. ii. Dem.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 137
Just conditionally. For, as we have seen, the
Justice depends on there being suitable objects,
and on communications being established with
them. Thus, God is necessarily undeviatingly
Righteous in Himself : and He is, by consequential
necessity, of inflexible Justice in His relations to
the other. Justice began (it might be affirmed)
with the creation. Yea, tis not without its own
significance that, in the progress of our proof, the
Justice of God was (first) reached by an a
posteriori step. The proposition as to Justice
supplies, in fact, the only instance where a simple
argument from effect to cause is introduced into a
demonstration ; and this circumstance may be
held to tell its own tale. Rectitude, however, was
ere the universe of finites was : it was from
eternity ; and from eternity it was a necessary
constituent of the Divine Mind. A condition of the
Divine Mind is to be always thinking : and the
thoughts of the Divine Mind were, of necessity,
7. It is, therefore, undeniable, being a most
evidently true position, that God, the True, the
Faithful, the inflexibly Just, is, of necessity,
altogether Righteous ; and we formulate the certain
and most weighty truth accordingly.
8. So, God, who is the True, and the Faithful,
and the inflexibly Just, is, necessarily, the
138 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
God, ivho is True, and Faithful, and inflexibly
Just, and altogether Righteous, is, necessarily,
All-Loving, yea, Love Itself.
1. Having the Proposition, God is Loving,
given as one to be evinced by strict demonstration,
is exactly equipollent to the obligation to prove, by
reasoning the severest, and impervious to the shafts
of the keenest logic which may be opposed, that
God is Love. Let, then, what has been already
advanced be carefully remembered and pondered :
namely, That every position which undeniably
follows from our first principles, themselves
altogether unimpugnable, is introducible, and, in
fact, has a real title to remain among the truths of
our science. 31 Let this be weighed, likewise, That
any objector, who may present himself, has some
thing not so very inconsiderable to do. An
objector is under the necessity of shelving that a
priori reasoning is totally inapplicable, or he must
point out wherein it has been positively misapplied
in the detail. b
2. But to facilitate our progress in demon
strating the proposition before us, and in deducing
a Sect. 4 of Schol. ill. xinder Prop. iii. Div. III.
b Sect. 12 of Schol. n. under Prop. iii. Div. III.
Sus-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 139
correctly the suitable inferences, and making the
proper applications of the demonstration ; let us,
first of all, lay down two pre-suppositions, in a
distinct form. They might indeed have been
subsumed as we went along, without any such
explicit enunciation, and verily in a noiseless and
unpretentious way. Unpretentiousness is generally
commendable : yet tis laudable only where no
illicit assumption is concealed under the affected
reticence ; and every assumption (metaphysical, as
well as ethical) is improper which is not meant for
the eye, or honest inspection of some sort. An
assumption not meant for inspection, but kept
sedulously out of sight, is dishonest ; and, so, it
discreetly courts the shade. In fine, twas deemed
best to proceed in the most undisguised and open
manner. Besides, what ill consequences need be
feared from the formal exposure of the postulates
in question ? The more they are considered, the
more their truth will be conceded, and appreci
1. On the supposition of a creation of the
world, the continuance of the same in being is
equal to (not, observe, identical with) the continu
ally repeated creation of the particulars and their
140 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
2. Tis clear, that created existence implies the
relative Creator. Existence, by reason of a Being
having made the things begin to be, is dependent,
of course, on the Being. In fine, conservation, or
preservation of existence, is plainly tantamount to
continued creation, on supposition of a creation.
On the supposition of the conservation of things,
consequent on a creation ; the supposition of the
possibility of an annihilation of any, or of all, of
the things actually existing, involves no contradic
tion, nor even difficulty. The supposition, that
things began to be, involves that they may, as a
possibility, cease to be. Creation involves the
possibility of annihilation. A Creator, therefore,
1. It has been demonstrated, that the Supreme
is consummately Happy, a and that the motive to
create was the overflowing Happiness, in alliance
with a desire coincident with the perfect Goodness,
of the Creator. b Now, a great deal is contained in
these positions ; and it will be necessary that we
weigh well their fulness of meaning.
2. In the next place, we must consider the
force of the indisputably true proposition, that
a Div. III. Prop. i. b Div. III. Sub-Prop, after Prop. i.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 141
preservation or conservation is tantamount to
continued creation ; a not overlooking what is
3. For the consequence is truly important.
Creation involves Happiness and Goodness : the
conservation, therefore, must also involve the
Goodness. Conservation (we say) being equivalent
to continued creation ; while creation itself
proceeded from the Goodness of God : the con
servation must be regarded as the product of the
4. But to come a little closer still to our point.
The attribute of Goodness it was which brought
the race of man into being. b Preservation is just
creation indefinitely prolonged : a The preservation
of man upon the face of the earth, is, therefore, due
to that attribute of Goodness.
5. Now, Goodness, culling men into existence,
and preserving them in being, after their creation ;
this is Lore to men. If, in fact, Goodness be
viewed as a permanent condition or state of mind ;
Love may be viewed as the same Goodness in
exercise, or in its acts. In truth : Given Goodness,
preserving the men whom the Goodness created,
and have you not Love \ What else could be
meant by Love ? Verily, such Goodness preserv
ing men, is but another name for Love to men.
:t Lemma I.
h Schol. under Part iii. Div. II. ; and Sub-Prop. Prop. i. Div. III.
142 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
6. We must bear in mind whereabouts we are.
Our exact stand-point will be seen in the following
recapitulatory positions. The world, with all it
contains, began to be. a In particular, our race was
created ; b and the Goodness of the consummately
Happy Supreme was the cause or reason of the
creation. In fine, Man became, is to us equal, in
logical force, or apodeictically, to saying, Goodness,
creating, was in lively exercise. The living Good
ness, as a potency, was put forth in acts. And
now tis added : Conservation involving continued
Goodness ; d the Goodness, in such continuous
living act, is Love.
7. On the supposition, that it has been demon
strated that God is All-loving, a question arises,
naturally arises from the subject itself, but arises
also from reflection on the case of the attribute of
Justice. 6 In the case referred to, we have seen
that Justice is a purely relative affection ; while,
to express what is, in God, the absolute principle
from which the Justice on presentation of the fit
and suitable objects derives its birth, we are
obliged to use another term, standing for another
idea, namely, Righteousness, Rightness, Rectitude. 1
Analogously, must we adopt now another term
a Sub- Prop. & Coroll. from same, after Prop. iv. Part ii. Div. I.
b Schol. after Part iii. Div. II. <l Supra, 3.
Prop. i. and Sub-Prop. Div. III. e Supra, Prop. III.
t Supra, Coroll. from Prop. III.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 143
when we would denote that which, in God as
absolute, corresponds to Love to mankind ? Or,
does it suffice, to denote the original absolute
principle from which that Love proceeded, that we
abide by the same word itself, saying, That, as
God loves men, so, from eternity, there was, in Him,
the principle of Love, or (to express it so) He is
Love itself: Love from eternity, or absolutely, as
a source, in posse, of the Love which, in esse, a
creation, or real becoming, of Intelligent and Moral
creatures capable (because of their nature) of
loving God in return would develope, or bring-
forth as a time-manifestation ?
8. To the query thus started, the correct
answer must indubitably be, that here, unlike
what holds in the case of Justice and Righteous
ness, the very same word which expresses the
relative affection towards the creature-objects, will
properly serve to express the absolute principle in
which the time-manifestation has its origin. Love
to men could not have come to be, unless there
had been in God the source, and immediate cause,
of such a becoming : and the absolute principle, or
the principle in God as absolute, could be
righteously denoted by no term better than by
the term itself which stands for the relative
9. Thus, God, as He is Loving to His creature,
so is He, as in Himself, Love itself, or essentially.
144 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
10. But this solution of the inquiry only gives
rise to another question or the same question in
another form or the same question, but raised (to
speak the language of science) to a higher power,
or (in language less scientific) advanced to a
profounder phasis. God is loving to men : and
God is Love itself: But does not Love, whether
as a relative affection, or as an absolute principle
in (or of) Deity, equally demand an object ? It
may be said, and truly, that God is Righteous in
Himself, or without the supposal of any object.
But can we suppose Love in God, any sort of
Love, without supposing, at the same time, an
object some object or other, to which the Love
must be directed, and on which the Love must be
exerted and expended ? In short, are not Love,
and objectivity, so related that the former cannot
be, or be conceived to be, without the latter ?
11. The answer to this query, must be in the
most decided affirmative. It is formerly and
absolutely impossible an impossibility in the
inmost nature of things that Love can exist
without there being Love exerted towards, or in
connection with, some object or other.
12. But if this be so, (and very plainly it
must be so,) does not the supposition farther
demand, that there should be the eternal, i.e.,
beginning-less, object of the eternal Love ? Of
course, that supposition does demand the farther
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 145
concession ; and, of a truth, there is no denying,
nor evading either, the consequence.
13. Well, then: that being so, is there not
necessitated thereby the supposition of the exist
ence of the creation, or actual beginning to be of
creatures, as the objective ? Is not the creation
the necessary eternal effect of an eternal efficient
cause ? Is not there such a necessity ? By no
means. Nothing of the kind must, or need, be
supposed. For, as we have already had a
demonstration of the impossibility of the con
ception of the eternity of the material universe, a
so there is now no reason why we should feel
the need of a created object to meet the re
quirements of absolute Love, or Love in God as
14. Of necessity, Love demands the objective
to it. True ; but the object may be existing in
the Supreme Mind Itself, and discoverable on an
analysis of the outer part at least of the internal
constitution of the Godhead. The Divine Being, in
being conscious of His own thoughts, 13 must be
capable of reflection upon Himself, also. Without
such capability of self-reflection, or apperception,
there were no mind : True mind demands, necessarily
demands, this power of apperception, or self- analysis. 1 *
Well : the mind reflecting has, as objective to it,
a Div. I. Part ii. Prop. iv. Sub-Prop, and Coroll. from same.
b Div. II. Part i., Schol. Vide, etiam, Div. III. Prop. i. 3.
146 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
the niind reflected on. All the consequences
resulting necessarily from the circumstance thus
referred to, it can form no part of our present
business to follow out. A single suggestive hint,
however, in addition to the cardinal fact alluded
to, may be dropped ere we retire from this ground
a region admitting to, and abounding in, the
most fascinating speculation on the sublimest of all
15. The Supreme Mind, in reflecting, and in
being, simul et semel, reflected on, supplies, in the
active, and the passive, attitudes involved, the
strikingly pronounced duality necessarily inherent
in the very conception of such a mind. Now, the
reflection must be accompanied by perfect com
placence, entertained by the agent reflecting, to
wit, the mind existing as agent, towards and upon
the reflected on, or the mind existing as patient.
That is, the Divine Mind reflecting, is delighted
with = loves the Mind reflected on. Necessarily
so, because the reflecting on perfections (whether
attributes or thoughts) must causally necessitate
perfect complacence, delight, love pure felicity,
in short in the very reflection. Thus, the reflected
on is loved : the Eternal Mind, therefore, eternally
delights in, or loves, that image, or likeness,
begotten of itself, which is reflected on. It is
evident, too, that the reflecting Mind, as the cause
of the loved reflection, is truly and really the
Sus-DiT. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 147
Father of the other, which, therefore, becomes, is
eternally becoming, the Son of that Love. All this
is evident, because it follows from the postulation
of premises which themselves have been thoroughly
16. But is not the relation which has just
been exhibited productive, by the necessary
sequence of thought, of yet another relation in
the Godhead ? Doubtlessly it would appear so :
but it behoves us to stop short, else, and ere
we are aware, we shall be certainly landed in
the study of the verity of the Divine Trinity.
Indeed, it seems hardly possible to encounter
the doctrine of the true Love of God, even in
the abstractest way, without touching on some
points where the doctrine branches oft into, if not
Trinitarian ground, ground surely adjoining the
sphere within which the doctrine of the primal
Triad is contained. In fact, the two may be
compared to two circles, or other geometrical
figures, whereof the one is contained within, and
forms part of, the other. While, on the other
hand, the dogma of one God, shut up in but
one person, is an unprolific datum, and leads to
very little of any great importance or interest to
man. The Love to a creature of a Being, loveless
before the creation, furnishes but a cold sort of
warmth. That dogma is besides a horrific doQ-ma,
holding within it the idea of an utterly solitary
148 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
Mind, existing, for the eternity before the creation
was, in drear, dread solitude, alone, and un-loving :
for, the moment Love enters on the scene, agent
and patient, the lover and the loved, enter too, and,
in fine, the first step leading to hypostases in the
Godhead is taken.
17. As a matter of course, this is another
relative Attribute : relative it is, at all events, in
the same way as that in which Truth is relative."
Both Attributes require the objective, an object of
some kind. Truth imperatively demands an object,
and Love imperatively needs an object. The nature
of Love is such that it incessantly craves after an
object. Without any object, Love would inevit
ably cease to be Love, becoming an unsatisfied
longing for it would not know what : there could
remain no more than an everlasting pining. Love,
then, must have its object : Without it, Love Itself
were unhappy. Completely Happy Love ; in other
words, the Love of The Consummately Happy One ;
must have its object : ay, and an adequate object
too. An insufficient object could not meet such
Love, or (but language, with its limited power,
threatens to fail us here) be equal to the require
ments of the yearnings of the Love of the Eternal
Infinite One. Anything contained within Time
and Space were all too little. Love ( tis repeated)
imperatively needs an object. The objective, of
a Vide, supra, Prop. IT. Lemma.
Sue-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 149
some sort : whether a Hypostasis in the Godhead,*
or some phase of the creaturely nature ; this latter,
again, being divisible into the angelic nature, b and
the human nature. Of course, we eschew the
particular consideration of every object rising above
the plane of mankind ; in the same way as was done
in the case of the proposition about Truth. c
18. This is a most relative Proposition, if you
like, or when held to be restricted to a creature,
and to man. For, should it be argued, that,
strictly, as Goodness is to all things, or may be
conceived to regard all things, in creation ; so Love
is certainly not applicable to even animality
generally, but, in propriety, can be considered
applicable to only humanity, the Intelligent and
Moral, the Rational and Loving, part of the world ;
no one should be greatly inclined to dispute it.
19. On the whole, as it has been demonstrated,
that the Simple, Sole, Being of Infinity of
Expansion and of Duration, who is All-knowing,
All-powerful, entirely Free, and completely Happy,
is necessarily perfectly Good ; (1 the implied Goodness
being entirely equivalent to Love ; e the conclusion
is, therefore, inevitable, that that Great and Good
Being is necessarily Loving, or, to vary the
phraseology, the All-Loving One. And the Love
a Weigh 6 of Lemma, Prop. ii. Division III.
11 Weigh 5, ibid. d Sub-Prop, to Prop. i. Div. III.
c Ibid., 7. Xupra, Sect. 5, 6.
150 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
to the creature being regarded as to its source, that
Being is rightly said to be Love Itself. Love,
unlike Justice, has its foundation in se. Love is
act, or state, as to time, and aboriginal principle,
all in one.
20. Then, God, who is the True, and the
Faithful, and the inflexibly Just, and the altogether
Righteous, is, necessarily, the All-Loving One, yea,
AN IMPORTANT DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PROPOSITIONS II. & III.,
ON ONE SIDE, AND PROPOSITION IV., ON THE OTHER.
1. A great difference exists, and is to be
noticed between the cases of Truth and Justice,
and the case of Love ; and it shall be our business,
here, to distinguish between the cases, as the
nature of things demands.
2. Whereas, the demonstrations, in the cases
of Truth and Justice, are to this effect : postulating
objects, and that there be action ; God is, necessarily,
Truthful and Just. But the action itself is not
3. To particularize. To be True, requires
objects. a God is necessarily Truthful to man,
when He communicates with man. b But the
communication itself is not demonstrated : it was
a Supra, Prop. II. Lemma. b Prop. II. Dem.
Si-B-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 151
but postulated. Consequently, Truthfulness, as a
fact, is never proved under the demonstration in
4. So with regard to Justice. To be Just
requires objects, b and objects of a special
description. God necessarily administers Justice,
in communicating with the good and with the bad. d
But the actual administration itself of the Justice,
in reference to those objects, is never demonstrated :
Consequently, no one exercise of the attribute in
question is ever demonstratively established.
5. But, with regard to Love, tis quite other
wise. For, when there is postulated now, what has
been beforehand demonstrated, that Love does
conserve the men whom Goodness created, 6 the
existence itself of the men, the objects of the Love,
is irreversibly bestowed. Love does, therefore,
evidence the existence of its own objects, by its
intimate living relation to them.
6. In truth, nobody except, perhaps, a stray
metaphysician (maddened by all-unadulterated
egoistic emanations, inhaled imdilutedly, and, by a
great deal, too incautiously) dreaming in a panthe-
istically idealistic region hopelessly beyond the
sphere common to Theists and Atheists, and very
far indeed away in the clouds ; he (a man himself,
a Prop. II. Postal. d Prop. III. Dem.
b Supra, Prop. III. Lemma, 1. e Supra, Dem. Sect. 5, 6.
c Prop. III. Lemma, 3, &c.
152 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
it is to be presumed) having been expressly
transported thither by no other machinery than
his o\vn pure and simple, but rapt, imagination,
helped, mayhap, by a push from some other unsober
philosopher, at starting : nobody (we say) but a
stricken metaphysician, denies the existence of
men. Nobody denies, therefore, the existence of
the objects of this attribute of Love.
7. And this is now to be considered : Whether
it is credible, that, Goodness having created men,
and Love being concerned in preserving them,
God, as possessor of the attributes of Trueness and
Justness, should never, on any occasion, reveal
Himself to men, or come, in any way, into living
contact with them ? Love has men for its cosmical
objects : God loves the world of men : Were it not
incredible, therefore, that the God of Truth, and
Justice, should never draw nigh unto men ; draw
nigh, for example, unto the virtuous and good, who
resemble Himself, to bless them yet more and
more. a Yea, Love makes it plain, that God s
presence with men is credible, and more than
credible : the utter absence of God were incredible.
Incredible, indeed, and impossible, too, that Love
should never communicate with its objects, whom,
yet, it conserves from day to day. Love and God
are the same : b God does, therefore, communicate
with Love s objects, that is, men. But God is
a Vide, supra, Prop. III. Schol. ii. 13, &c. b Supra, Dem. 19.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 153
Truthful, and Just, as well as Loving. In fine,
Love must be supposed to have Truth and Justice
in its train. The three Attributes meet in the
same God, the common Substrate of all the
Attributes : Therefore, the three do necessarily go
8. Thus, it is proved, that the condition of
Truth, as actual fact, and the condition of Justice,
as actual fact, have been implemented. And so,
what was before demonstrated as in posse, is now
demonstrated as in esse ; the only postulate
subsumed, by the demonstration, being one as
inoffensive as it is verily unobjectionable, the
position, to wit, There are men. A position very
secure from assailment on the side of Atheism ;
as Atheists are agreed in ignoring, not men indeed,
but all intelligences, or orders of intelligences, but
men. So far from denying the existence of men,
Atheists go to the opposite extreme, and deny all
mental existence which is not a man s.
9. The present demonstration is, thus, the
complement, not only of the Proposition as to
Goodness, a as it unquestionably is, but also it
is (though in another way) the complement of the
Proposition regarding Truth, b as well as of that
regarding Justice. For which reason, the import
ance of this Proposition cannot be rated too highly. d
a Sub-Prop, under Prop. i. Div. III. b Prop. ii. Div. III.
c Prop. iii. Div. III. (1 Vide, supra, Prop. ii. Postul.
154 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
The referential importance of this Proposition,
therefore, cannot be rated too highly, even if we
were to urge nought about its importance on its
own account. But such importance, in its turn,
cannot be overrated.
10. For, Love is, without doubt, a tree of
Life : in a certain good sense, it is the tree of Life.
It is, in fact, the true mundane Yggdrasil. To
vary our view, and enlarge, to the utmost, the
illustrating medium : Love is the central attractive
power of the universe. It is the centre, whence
all influential radiations must depart, and to which
they must return as their proper home. There is,
of necessity, an inmost Spiritual Sun to the
Universe ; a central influence appertaining to the
sum total of all the forces of every world, and
every system of worlds. a There must be supposed
a centre ; in other words, a Sun of all Suns,
material and spiritual : otherwise, related things
would be out of proportion to each other, and
apparent effects would be unlawfully divorced
from their only possible causes.
11. GOD is Love; and, when we say so, we
evoke the omnipotent word, representative of the
all-radiant idea, which throws warmth upon the
field of our world. Possessed of this secret, we feel
we are in possession of the talisman yielding the
primal causation. When we have reached as high
a Vide, supra, Prop. III. Schol. iii. 30.
SUB-DIV. II.] THEBEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 155
as Love, we have reached (to use the humanly
most significant expression) the very heart of GOD.
12. And if Love is omnipotent at one pole,
equally so is it at the opposite pole. Strong as an
aggressive force, it is equally strong as a resisting
force. Equally positive : equally negative.
13. What, now, can resist the Love of God?
What can be stronger than the great motive power
of the absolute universe ?
OTHER VITAL DIFFERENCES BETWEEN PROPOSITIONS II. <t III.,
AND PROPOSITION IV.
1. In the preceding Scholium there is pointed
out one great difference between Propositions II.
and III. and the present Proposition." There are
other differences ; and it may be wise to take this
opportunity, so fit and suitable in every way, to
draw attention to some of those other differences.
2. Why, or from what cause, Creation ? And
how do the several attributes of Truthfulness,
Justice, and Goodness = Love, stand affected to
Creation, and to each other with reference to that
relation ? These are the questions to which
attention shall be now directed : and throughout
this Scholium our distinctive object must be
sedulously kept in sight.
a Schol. preced. 1-6.
156 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
3. Supposing the fact of a creation Supposing,
in other words, that the world which is around us,
and the worlds upon worlds, or systems upon
systems of worlds, which are around our little ball,
or our small sidereal system, as a centre, with all
things in those continents, began sometime to be
(a point demonstrated*) ; when tis asked, Why
was that world of ours, or the universe at large,
created ? the answer (as we have seen b ) is :
Because of the existence of a principle co-incident
with the over-flowing, as twere, of the Happiness
of the Being who is the essential Substratum of
Expansion and Duration, Immensity and Eternity.
To repeat it : The Happiness of the Infinite One,
uniting with His Goodness, does, as it were, flow
over : Over-flowing, the confluence freely out-births
itself in Creation. And this is Goodness : at any
rate, one great part of Goodness.
4. But were one to ask abstractly, that is,
abstracting in mind creation as fact, with its only
possible cause ; w r ere one (we say) to ask abstractly,
Why, or, Whence Creation ? a totally different
state of things would be presented. Our stand
point would be different : the objects seen would
be different : The vision, therefore, would be
reported (because presented) quite differently. In
the case now supposed, we would not be in
a Div. I. Part ii. Sub-Prop, and Coroll. therefrom.
b Div. III. Sub-Prop.
SUB-DIV. IL] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 157
possession of the indispensable condition of the
unspeakable Happiness, in union and unison with
the aboriginal Goodness, of the One self-existent
Substance. But this whole matter shall be made
5. And to begin at the beginning. Were the
question put, Will the Great Being create ? the
question being taken in and by itself, it could not
be answered. The reasons, or causes, would be
awanting. In the case at present imagined, the
fact of creation would be out of sight : creation
would be only possible. And whether the Great
Being would, or would not, create, could not be
declared. The question could be answered only by
the help of certain assumed positions. a Creation
being viewed as no more than a mere possibility ;
and the theorem of complete Happiness b being
entirely omitted; no creaturely mind, however
exalted, could by any means decide even this,
Whether it were likely that there would be a
creation at all, or nut. The premises warranting
any decision would be absent. On the other hand,
the Happiness b being taken into account ; creation
would be likely : Not necessary, by reason of the
entire Freeness, but very likely. In fine, when
we view creation as a possibility, and not yet
actually being, the absolute attribute of Happi-
a Confer 3 of Lemma, Prop. ii. Div. III.
b Div. III. Prop. i. c Div. II. Part. iii.
158 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
ness is the attribute to which we must mainly
6. But another datum shall next be postulated.
On the supposition of a creation of men, a point
itself demonstrated elsewhere, a we have demon
strated Goodness to be an Attribute : b the transi
tional Attribute ; intermediate between the absolute
attributes of Divisions I. & II., and the really
relative attributes of this Division. We have
demonstrated, we repeat, Goodness to be an
attribute. That is ; accepting the creation of man
as a fact; then, applying to the attribute of
Happiness/ 1 we prove that the one must be assigned
as the cause of the other : e Happiness resulting in
Goodness, and Creation, are in relation to each
other as cause and effect. 6 Thus, the question of
creation is one about Goodness. This is the
attribute to which creation must be attached.
7. Of course, we may affirm nearly the same
thing of Conservation, so far forth as conservation
is tantamount to continued creation.* Conserva
tion, as well as Creation, is the result of Goodness.
8. Thus : If the question, Taking for granted
creation, why creation ? be put ; the attributes of
a Coroll. from Sub-Prop. Part ii. Div. I. ; & Schol. Part iii. Div. II.
b Div. III. Sub-Prop.
c Vide Div. III. Prop. ii. Lemma, 3. Coroll. from Prop. ii.
Lemma, 3. Prop. iii. Lemma, 6. Vide, etiam, Prop, iv.,
Dem. Sect. 17, 18.
d Div. III. Prop. i. e Div. III. Sub-Prop. * Supra, Lemma I.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 159
Happiness and Goodness give us the answer. And
they only are capable of entering into the solution.
9. But when we are abreast of Justice, tis
quite another case. Another attribute has been
introduced, and a quite different field is before us.
10. These topics, though they may be com
paratively uninteresting, are yet highly important
in themselves ; and therefore, and to attain
exceeding plainness in so grave a matter, we shall
go over the ground again. When we regard
creation as only possible, man is viewed, of course,
as not yet actually existent : he is only to be.
He exists in the ideas of the Supreme Mind, and
there only. And when, postulating man, we speak
of the cause of man s existence, we must look to
Happiness, and the accompanying and resulting
Goodness. But when we have in aspect man as
really existing ; and God s dealing with man, the
reality : there is taken in another attribute, that,
to wit, of Justice. AVe say, we take in the Justice
of God ; not merely His Truth. Yet, doubtless,
the Justice of God involves the Truth of God. a
11. And, in the same way, when we regard
God as the Just God, man is held as created ; not,
to be created. God created man : b and He acts
towards man, the real existence, not only as the
a Vide, supra, Prop. III. Dem. 7, et seq.
b Schol. after Sub-Prop, under Prop. i. Div. III. ; in conjunction
with Schol. after Part iii. Div. II.
160 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
Good One, who conserves the creatures He brought
into being/ 1 but as the Just God, who must act
towards each man as he truly is, and who, there
fore, must render to every man according to his
state of mind, and resulting works ; the good man
being treated as being so, and the bad man being
treated as such. b
12. To glance once more at the ground we
have gone over. The question concerning creation
can have 110 reference to the attribute of Justice.
But it refers to Goodness. The fields of the two
attributes are, so far, entirely distinct.
13. Truth and Justice, as in God, have, thus,
nought to do with creation, old or new. id est,
the creation of man in the beginning, or his
re-creation now by the impartation to him, as a
deteriorated being, of a better nature than the old
one, defaced and all-degraded as it has become.
Yea, these attributes require, not a possible
creation, but the creature as an accomplished fact, 1
as the field for their exercise. GOD is Just = GOD
is Just to creatures, or at least to men* It is
never to be forgotten, that the Good One, who
creates, conserves man ; and, as Conserver or
a Dem. preced. Sect. 3, 4.
b Supra, Prop. III. Dem. 9, & Coroll. 6, multisque aliis locis.
c Confer, ut supra, Prop. III. Schol. ii. 11, & Schol. sub Schol.
d Conftr Sect. 10, 11, ut supra.
e Div. III. Prop. iii. Lemma, 2, etc.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 161
Preserver, has, therefore, to do with man as a
14. There is one thing which must be admitted,
and which (if our conceptions were capacious and
clear) should and would be borne in mind, that,
in one great special respect, tis somewhat different
with regard to Truth, from what strictly holds with
regard to Justice. Truth may be conceived to be
occupied, not only concerning creaturely intelli
gences other than men, for instance, angelic spirits ;
but also concerning uncreated hypostases, if there
be such, if there be (let us say) a Second Hypos-
tasis, and a Third, in the GODHEAD.* Justice,
however, Justice in, at any rate, its essential
aspects, can be exercised only in the case of
creaturely objects ; that is, as far as our demon
stration is concerned, only with regard to human
SHALL THE REWARDS OF THE GOOD, AND THE PUNISHMENTS OF
THE EVIL, BE TO ALL ETERNITY ?
1. A question was reserved d for this place ; the
question, to wit, Will the Rewards of the Righteous,
and the Punishment of the Wicked, continue for
ever ? And, on a first view, it appears as if, in
this quarter of our a priori horizon, the question
a Dem. preced. Sect. 3, 4.
b Confer Div. III. Prop. ii. Lemma, Sect. 4, 5, 6.
Div. III. Prop. iii. Lemma, 2, etc.
d Vide 39, Schol. in. Prop. iii. Div. III.
162 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
might be decided very easily. For the Love of
God, founded on His Goodness, being in the field
of argument, as now to be postulated, what great
difficulty can there be ?
2. We have seen a what is the decision, upon
the matter in hand, of the attribute of Justice, the
origin, this, of so many prominent and differential
masculine characteristics. Justice cannot decide,
dogmatically and unconditionally, whether the
rewards of the righteous, and the punishments of
the wicked, shall last for ever, or not. Justice can,
in truth, say nothing apodeictically on these points. b
This attribute informs us, that impartial retribu
tions shall be inflexibly and accurately administered
to every man, according to his works ; whether the
administration takes place in this world, or shall
take place in the next world. But, taking for
granted that the rewards and the punishments, or,
at any rate, the punishments, shall be finite in
duration, Justice, at the utmost, can do no more
than decide precisely how long the punishments
shall last, by declaring that they shall, or at least
may, last long enough to allow of the infliction of
misery adequate to the enormity of the wickedness
calling for punishment. Yet Justice hath no power
to decide even this by abstract information as to
a Supra, Prop. III. Schol. iii.
b Supra, Prop. III. Schol. iii., 21, &c.
c Prop. III. Schol. iii. Sect. 11-14, &c.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 163
how loner the men themselves will live ; whether
for a long time, or for a very long time. Justice
did not make the men begin to be : Justice does
not conserve them : This attribute has nought to
do with such matters. 8
3. But is the same decision to be come to by
the attribute of Love ? Love, on one, at least, of
its sides, the seat, as it were, of the femininism of
Deity, namely, Love, as long-suffering patience,
and pitiful compassionateness, to the low and sunk,
and mercifulness to the miserable and lost, Love,
the source, consequently, of the feminine excel
lencies of our race. Does Love answer the question
with the same, / know not: it is not in me?
Surely, one need not be reckoned over- hasty who
would at once say, Xo : Love must reply with a
4. As far as the Rewards of the Righteous are
concerned, there will be no difficulty at all, from
any quarter. The ground of the decision he re is
clear ; the decision itself easy. Goodness called
the men into being : b Love preserves them : c In
the spiritual world, or in heaven, good men will be
only more like GOD than they were when they
lived on earth : d On the whole, therefore, the
a Schc.l. prececl. Sect. 9-13, &c.
b Sub-Prop. Div. III. c Div. III. Prop. iv. Dem. Sect. f> & 9.
a Vide, supra, !!,& 13, Schol. ii. ; and 11 to 14, Schol. iii.,
both in Prop. III. ; aliosqj loc.
164 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
answer must be, It is certain, that the men will
exist for ever. All the causes of their existence,
and conservation, are at work. And no inexor
able attribute demands, or even seems to demand,
aught else to be accomplished. The Righteous,
then, will continue for ever and ever. They are
attached (if the strong anthropomorphitism may be
pardoned a ) by strong connecting links, to the throne
of God. As God liveth, they shall live also. Star-
suns, they shall shine ceaselessly in the Eternal
5. Such is the answer to the question, so far
as the one class of men is concerned.
6. But what is the answer which is to be
returned as to the other class ? A very different
sort of men are the Righteous from the Wicked,
and a very different solution must be accorded as
to the case of these latter. The true gist of the
whole question, as one of difficulty, is undoubtedly
in this direction.
7. Will the Punishment of the Wicked be for
ever? Or, as we might now put the question,
without just offence to the unalterable laws of logic,
Will God punish sinners, or, suffer sinners to be
punished ( = to punish themselves) eternally ? In
any case, Will sinners be punished eternally ?
This, then, is the question ; and there can be no
doubt, that this is a fearfully momentous question
a Vide, supra, 11, Schol. ii. Prop. III., etc.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 165
for sinners to ask, and to have answered for them.
The great reason is, of course, because of the
tremendous weight attached to one of the terms in
the query : "for ever," or "eternally," or whatso
ever the word, or rather words, mayhap the phrase,
may be. Whatever was the case at first, with
regard to the equivalent terms, or rather expres
sions, in the original Greek and Hebrew languages
from which source the current English meaning
was doubtless taken ; the term has come to have a
most particularly emphatic meaning with us. By
"eternal" existence, as employed in this question,
the ordinary superficial theologian of the day means
(though perhaps he knows it not) an existence
enduring alongside of, and coincident with, the
duration of the existence of God Himself: true
co-existence. Tis but proper to avoid enlarging,
on the present occasion, on this portentous topic ;
but, nevertheless, tis not easy to omit the
suggestion of a single reflection : Only think, then,
of the full significance of that affirmation which
attaches the miserable damnation of the wicked in
hell and, consequently, infernal blasphemies, the
absolute acme of all evil to the o-lorious high
throne of the Eternal : which binds up the existence
of evil, and the existence of GOD, in one indissoluble
attachment. Speak we not of the accumulation of
horrors, to every individual member of the universe,
implied in the dreadful position : But in what
166 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
sense can God be the One Living One, if an
antagonistic element, centred in a monstrous
Monarch, be bound up with the eternity to come as
much as God Himself ? For, no condition of things,
even hellish, can exist without the shadow at
least of a government. No kingdom without a
king. Even an abhorred kingdom of darkness
could not maintain itself through one of the days,
nights rather, of hell, without its appallingly
hateful and hating Ahriman.
8. But in touching on the immense significa
tion covered by one of the terms of that query,
have not we been betrayed into something like a
proleptical objection to the doctrine itself of
Eternal Torments ? The excuse must be, that the
drifting into objection, proceeding from exposition,
is only too natural. Yet it must be remembered
that, whatever be implied in the position, The
torments of the damned shall be to all eternity ;
our inquiry at present is really this, Is the doctrine
true ? Whatever be involved in the fundamental
idea of the junction of such a predicate to such
a subject, Is the proposition itself true, or false ;
to be accepted, or rejected ?
9. What great difficulty can there be, after all,
in deciding the question ?
10. Namely, what difficulty can there be in
deciding, that those attributes of Goodness and
Love will be always exigent in demanding that,
SUB-DIV. IT.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 167
if possible, the torments of the miserable damned
should be made to cease to be : While not one of
the other Attributes, as demonstrated, necessitates,
or even seems to necessitate, the everlasting
continuance of the misery of those unhappy
damned ones, most miserable they in their minds,
and most grievously tormented perhaps in their
responsive bodies ; those most pitiable sufferers,
most to be pitied as suffering tortures by reason
of their own evil passions, strong and victorious
over all their lawful feelings and thoughts, strong
and victorious even in hell, the place of not-to-be-
comforted lost souls. Certainly, not one of the
other Attributes does, in the merest seeming,
necessitate the everlasting continuance of misery,
if Inflexible Justice do not so. And this Attribute
does not, even in seeming, demand the everlasting
misery nor any such appallingly, unutterably,
horrific consequence. 11
11. If, then, the misery be to come to an end,
How (say you) shall the misery come to its end ?
Who can tell ? and it is not necessary that any
one should know. Enough, if we know that
Inflexible Justice is silent, while Divine Love in
the shape of gentle pity and compassion, or (better
yet) soft-hearted Mercy Mercy, which is simply
Love = Goodness to the abject and miserable,
Divine Love (we say) unceasingly pleads and prays
a Vide, supra, Prop. III.
168 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
for the cessation, as soon as possible, of all the
unutterable wretchedness in the wide domains of
God. Love to men is very fain to become Mercy,
on the presentation of the truly miserable among
men : and Divine Mercy what, in this wide
universe, can refuse to yield itself thereunto?
Enough is it for the good to know so much : and
humbly must they wait, in hope, for that consumma
tion, the greatest, and the last, of all the creaturely
consummations. For, by that consummation,
the whole creation, which, so visibly and pitifully,
groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now,
shall, finally, be delivered from the bondage of
corruption. In fine, Then the end ; and God
shall be all in all.
SCHOLIUM SUB SCHOLIO III.
1. But though no one can tell, in a positive
way, or dogmatically, how the misery is to come
to its end ; one may surmise how the misery will
be terminated. The misery will assuredly end :
But very likely not by the ceasing to be of the
evil, or (to give the most proper term) the wicked
ness, abstractly taken the cause of all the misery.
For, no way of ending evil is patent, or even
comprehensible, so long as the wicked persons
themselves remain. The evil tree must first be
made good, before the poison-fruit will become
SuB-Div. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 169
good, and safe for food, and wholesome in every
way. It seems, indeed, a moral proposition as
certain as any in metaphysical science, or mathe
matical, that the intensely wicked will not cease
from troubling even in hell : (whatever they may
l>e compelled to be, or not to do, in the grave.)
But, at all events, the wickedness, and its effect,
the misery, might be made to cease to be, by an
Almighty fiat, commanding the wickedness, with its
subject, to cease to be. a That Power which called
all men into being, can cause men to be no more :
yea, it could cause all the things of Time itself to
be no longer, and that in the very fullest of
senses. a No contradiction, no impossibility, no
absurdity, yea, no difficulty, of any kind, would
be implied in an act of Omnipotence, directed to
such a purpose, and bringing about such an end as
contemplated. About the existence of the power,
there can be no doubt : The question is solely
about the exercise of the ability. The annihilation
of the wicked in hell is quite possible to the
Creator. a Some of the Moral Attributes demand
it : Not one Attribute says, Nay ; the wickedness,
and the misery, multiplied into each other, and
increasing in more than any geometrical ratio.
must last for ever. The final annihilation, there
fore, is possible : And, being possible, it is
absolutely certain. The Creator, and Conserver,
l Lemma II
170 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
as the All-Loving One, must be the All-Merciful
One too, since, in Him, Mercy is but Love regard
ing the disconsolately afflicted. a Hence, the
certainty follows from the possibility of final
annihilation, as the ceasing to be of all misery in
2. Thus, the doctrine of the final annihilation
of the hopelessly abandoned and reprobate wicked,
arid therefore the unutterably tormented and com
fortless, is a doctrine from which there is no
escaping. It is a tenet of reason, and it is, there
fore, in perfect accord with the reasonings of the
argument a priori.
3. Not the philosophically-sounding annihila
tion, however, but the morally-characteristic
"destruction," is the ethically correct (not to say,
the Scriptural) expression, to denote the awful
utter close of the career of incorrigible, and finally
impenitent, wicked men. ; Twere not lawful to
seek to found any statement, in a demonstrative
work, upon the testimony of a Bible-writer, or
upon any authority whatever : but as there is here
but surmising, and not laying down the law
apodeictically, b each of the writers in the Bible is
entitled to be heard, as well as, and as much as,
any author, whosoever he be ; even taking that
low ground wherefrom the authors of the books in
The Book are viewed as purely human authorities.
a Supra, Schol. III. 11. b Supra, 1.
SUB-DIV. II.] THE BEIXG AXD THE ATTRIBUTES. 171
" Destruction," tis repeated, is the ordinary
Scriptural expression, though, occasionally, we
meet with the idea in even stronger words or
phrases; such as, "everlasting destruction from
the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of
His power." Everlasting destruction, indeed, just
because from the presence of the Lord, the
Demiurge, the " express image " of the person
(vTToo-Tc ia-eux;) of Him " who only " "hath Life in
Himself," the sole source of life to all the creatures.
1. One circumstance there is, on which an
observation, not to be forgotten, must be made.
It is only by a licence, that Truth, or Truthfulness,
rigorously construed, is included among the Moral
Attributes. Considered apart from other modes of
Mind, Trueness belongs rather to the Intellectual
class of faculties. a But, being (in its turn) a main
constituent in Justice, or the Moral faculty , b Truth
fulness is drawn over to the great Moral group of
2. The proposition as to Trueness constitutes,
indeed, the link between the Intellectual Attributes
and the strictly Moral powers of Mind. Just as,
in a similar manner, the principle of Freeness
might be said to be a link between the same two
a Vide, supra, Prop. II. Dem. 4.
b Vide, supra, 3 of Lemma, Prop. iii. Div. III.
172 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. III.
sets of powers : Freeness being capable of being
viewed as connected with the large Will branch,
and, so, as being a Moral faculty ; as well as it is
capable of being viewed as connected with the more
purely Intellectual Attributes, or those appertain
ing to the domain of the Understanding, Freeness
standing in relation to the power of beginning
motion, being itself beyond the reach of, and
unconstrained by, all ab extra influences.
3. Here terminates the consideration of the, at
once, directly Relative, and purely Moral, Attri
butes. The propositions of this group carry on, of
course, the series of the Psychical Attributes ;
and they close the series of those Attributes which
have been denominated the Simple, in opposition to
the Complex or Compound, which are yet before
us, remaining for consideration in the Fourth
Division of this demonstration.
Div. IV.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 173
THE COMPLEX OR COMPOUND ATTRIBUTES.
1. In place of such words as, God, u ho is the
True, and the Faithful, and the inflexibly Just,
and the altogether Righteous One, ivho is also the
All-Loving One, yea, Love Itself, as occurring in
the last section of the preceding Proposition a ; in
future, there shall be employed, for the most part,
these terms, GOD, THE LORD, or, THE LORD GOD.
2. The substitution will conduce to an effective
brevity. It will enable us to avoid circumlocutions
and repetitions, which might be not only tedious,
but undesirable perhaps on accounts other than
those proceeding from mere tediousness, provocative
3. The predicates in the various propositions
demonstrated in the foregoing Sub-Division, express
relative qualities. These are the attributes expres
sive of peculiar relations in which the Supreme
Being stands to the human race ; and the term
a Viz. 20, Dem. Prop. iv. Div. III.
174 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV
LORD shall henceforth be used frequently, at all
events, shall be used to signify the relations
denoted by those words respectively. The term in
question shall stand for all those predicates of moral
As God, the Lord, is the Best, so He is, necessarily,
the Wisest of Beings.
8 1. Wisdom is not the same as Knowledge.
But Wisdom implies Knowledge, as Knowledge
implies Intelligence, and Intelligence, again,
implies a Mind. a Knowledge is implied by
Wisdom as the less is implied by the greater.
2. In itself, Wisdom may be said to be the
capacity of designing to employ means to ends, so
as to bring the ends or purposes about. Wisdom,
therefore, involves the knowledge of the use of
the most proper means, in aiming after purposes
or objects. Wisdom may even be said to involve
the capability of handling things, so as to turn
them into causes adequate to produce effects.
3. Thus, Wisdom is Knowledge of a certain
kind, applied in a certain way. Wisdom is the
knowledge of the relations of things specially,
of the relations of some things, as means, to other
a Division II. Part i. Scholium.
PROP. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 175
things, as ends. Wisdom is also the knowledge of
the fitnesses of causes to produce effects, in combina
tion with the power to employ the means, and to
bring the ends or effects to pass, in combination,
moreover, with the actual realisations of the mere
potentialities. For Wisdom implies somewhere a
power of execution. And power must be measured
by the actual execution or effect.
4. The elements, therefore, going to constitute
Wisdom are, Knowledge of relations, will and
power to use means, and thereby to realise ends,
or put in execution affairs.
5. Wisdom, as it has hitherto been explained,
is, for the most part, at least, an Intellectual
function of Mind. AVhatever be the constituents
of which, exclusively, Wisdom consists (a point on
which we are by no means obliged to pronounce
an absolute verdict ;) tis certain, that Wisdom
appertains to Intellect in this, that every act of
Wisdom involves a mental act or process into which
the Intellect enters. Whether or no Wisdom is
purely Intellectual, Wisdom implies always the
operation of the Intellectual powers. That which
containeth not any appeal to. or use of, the faculties
of the Intellect, is, in no propriety of speech,
Wisdom of any sort.
6. So much with regard to Wisdom abstractly,
or considered apart from all but the essential
momenta. In fine, Wisdom, so far forth as it is an
176 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
Intellectual function of Mind, is what we have
been considering. There is, however, another sort
of Wisdom ; a Wisdom with positive moral
elements, superadded thereunto. Of which addi
tional species anon.
7. The ground being thus opened up, by the
appropriate definition, or description, we are ready
to advance to the demonstration itself of the
Proposition, that God the Lord is necessarily the
Wisest of Beings.
God the Lord is, necessarily, the Wisest of Beings.
1. Now, that God the Lord must needs be the
Wisest of Beings, requires no very laboured
demonstration. The media concludendi are at
hand, and irresistible.
2. God the Lord has been demonstrated to be
the Intelligent and All-knowing Creator of all
things whatsoever ; a and He has also been proved
to be the Upholder or Sustainer in being of all
things : b it consequently follows, that He knoweth
all the relations, actual and possible, of things to
each other. The Mind which brought the things,
O O 3
with all their powers and qualities, into existence,
a Div. II. Part i. 4, and Part ii. 2.
b Div. III. Prop. iv. Dem. 5, &c.
PROP. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 177
and which continues the existence, cannot but
know all the relations to each other of the things
made and upheld by it.
3. To know all the possible relations of things
to each other, involves the knowledge of the
adaptability of the powers of things, as means to
ends. God the Lord, therefore, must be supposed
to know the fitness of this or that, to effect this
or the other thing. His knowledge of possible
fitnesses must be as profound as the knowledge
of all actual fitnesses throughout the wide uni
4. But the knowledge is not all that is
possessed. For as God the Lord is All-powerful, a
as well as All-knowing, 1 * He must have ability
to accomplish the realisation of all the adaptations
of things arising from so many fitnesses. Even as
He knows the various fitnesses of things to each
other, so He can bring about the adaptations, and
the ends had in view, whatever they be.
5. In fine, it is a necessary consequence from
what has preceded in this demonstration, that God
the Lord can bring about all the purposes which
his All-knowing Intelligence presents, and which
are desired as effects.
6. From all which it follows, most evidently,
that God, the Lord, is necessarily the Wisest
* Div. II. Part ii. b Div. II. Part i.
178 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
7. Then, God, the Lord, is, necessarily, the
Wisest of Beings.
SCHOLIUM AFTER FIRST DEMONSTRATION.
1. The demonstration just set forth may be
said to be that of the truth of the predicate. But
a second demonstration is available, in which the
subject, qua subject, shall become more prominent.
The proof shall extend to the subject as much as
to the predicate, and to both in conjunction
2. As, therefore, the proof, in the foregoing
demonstration, was greatly confined to the
predicate, so, joining subject to predicate after
another fashion, we must note the result. Con
joining, then, those two, we have the Perfect
Goodness and Love of God the Lord, adjoined to
His Measureless Wisdom. The practical result
of the conjunction will be, that all the ends
accomplished by the Being of beings must be the
most Benevolent, as well as the most Wise, or,
the Best, at once, and the Wisest.
3. But the important truth shall be best
brought out in a separate demonstration.
PROP. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 179
As God, the Lord, is the Best : so He is, necessarily,
the Wisest of Beings.
1. God, the Lord, not only is the All-knowing
and the All-powerful Cause of all things in the
material universe : a He is, also, the Loving One
conserving all. b He created all the things of the
world in Goodness, and He sustains them in Love. c
What, now, is the necessary result of the addition
of the precise Moral element in view to the
Wisdom, the possession of which by God, the Lord,
has been already demonstrated ? (1
2. Of course, it follows from the special
additional elements of the Goodness, and the Love,
beino- combined with the Wisdom, most mani-
festly, it immediately follows, that God, the Lord,
will be always exercising His Wisdom so as to
bring Beneficent ends about. Only Benevolent
effects will be aimed at by One who is endowed
with an assemblage of such Perfections, acting ever
harmoniously with a view to a common end.
3. The Wisdom, then, with which we are now
concerned, is that which is engaged in seeking to
a Div. II. Parts i. & ii. Div. III. Prop. iv. Dem.
c Div. III. Sub-Prop. 2, & Prop. iv. Dem. 5.
d Preceding Demonstration.
180 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
bring about Good ends. By no means ends or
effects irrespective of their moral bearing, but ends
having distinctly recognisable Benevolent action in
4. And, thus, it has been made clear, that as
God, the Lord, is the Best, so He is necessarily the
Wisest of Beings.
5. As God, the Lord, then ; is the Best, so He
is, necessarily, the Wisest of Beings.
COROLLARY FROM SECOND DEMONSTRATION.
From this demonstration it follows, that, as
Love and Wisdom act combinedly, so the one must
be supposed to serve as the measure (as it were) of
the other. From the very nature of the case, it
follows that the Wisdom will be the regulative
measure, the guide and the controller, of the
Love. Love, in its promptings and actings, will
be ruled by Wisdom : Wisdom will point out the
fittest means for Love to employ in accomplishing
its ends. Wisdom will be restrained and prevented
from ever resorting to any but beneficent devices ;
and Love will be prevented from enlisting in its
service any benevolences but those best calculated
to bring about the desired effects. Thus, there is
Love as the Moral motive ; Wisdom as the Intel
lectual director. The one the mover ; the other,
the regulating principle of the motion.
PROP. L] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 181
SCHOLIUM AFTER SECOND DEMONSTRATION.
Of course, the influence which Love imparts, is
not the only influence which will be at work.
Wisdom will ever consist in what is consonant to
the dictates of each and all of the other Attributes.
Justice, for instance, will be represented as well as
Love, in the case of operations having men, that is,
actually existing moral beings, directly for their
subject and end.
GENERAL SCHOLIUM AS TO WISDOM.
1. It has been suggested, a that there is another
sort of Wisdom than that which is purely or almost
entirely Intellectual, a Wisdom, to wit, which has
a distinct Moral element inherent in it ; and it
shall now be our business to open up this whole
matter. The Second Demonstration was concerned
with the proof of Moral Wisdom, or Wisdom as
existing in the Supreme Being, and that Demon
stration has, anticipatingly, prepared the way for us.
2. In the first place, then, there is the Wisdom
which has been above defined and described : b
Wisdom divested of all extraneous elements ;
abstracted from all non-essential momenta what
ever. This Wisdom in itself, or most strictly
a Proleg. 6. b Proleg. Sect. 2-5.
182 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
taken, is, speaking generally, an Intellectual func
tion of Mind.
3. But, no doubt, there is, also, a Wisdom
having Moral elements most distinctly added :
insomuch that the Wisdom now in view constitutes
a species widely different from the other.
4. The Moral Wisdom is, in turn, twofold.
Inasmuch as the Moral itself is of two kinds, the
strictly Moral, to wit, and its opposite, the
Im-moral; a so Moral Wisdom, likewise, is of two
5. First, there is Wisdom with the addition
of the eminently Moral quality of Goodness,
Beneficence, Benevolence, or by whatever term
the superadded Moral element may be expressed.
6. And there is a kind of Wisdom which has an
addition of an opposite character : W T isdom which
is evil ; aiming at wicked ends, being animated
by the desire to accomplish cruelties. This kind
may be denominated False Wisdom, as the former
kind may be denominated True Wisdom. And it
may be of use to expatiate, for a little, on the
topic of that bad Wisdom, as distinguished from
the better sort, the proper, the genuine Wisdom.
7. The mere abstract knowledge of relations,
or fitnesses, and the will and the power of using
means to ends so as to effect aims, is all that is
absolutely involved in pure Wisdom : Wisdom
a Div. III. Prop, iii., Lemma, 3.
PROP. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 183
defecated from all extraneous or non-essential
adjuncts. But when we speak of an end, an aim,
a purpose, we imply the idea of something truly
desirable for its own sake, or as a good in itself.
And desirable things are of two sorts : things are
desirable by reason of the good, or of the evil,
which is, or may be, in them. Good ends will be
aimed at by Good Beings ; evil ends, by Evil
Beings. Not that evil ends, as evil, can ever be
sought after by any mind, even a mind labouring
under mere insane delirations. But ends, which
are really evil in themselves, are apprehended or
may be occasionally apprehended to be good
things by those who, incurably principled in evil,
are only Evil Beings. It is to be observed, too,
that the end, in one case, may become but the
means, in another. There may be a vast interval
between the primary action of the Efficient Cause,
and the last operation in the Final Cause ; and
there may be, between the extremes, a series of
ends, each of which (except the last) may be, in
turn, means to a further end. And it is, in great
part, owing to the circumstance now adverted to
that the erroneous judgment has been come to,
that Wisdom is concerned with ends as much as
8. To speak, now, of the True Wisdom. This
Wisdom always has regard to the nature of the
ends, or the effects it would accomplish ; and it
184 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
will seek to bring about only good or beneficent
ends. Hence, tis plain, that True Wisdom is
simply Wisdom in combination with Goodness, or
it is the Wisdom of a Good Being. (Wisdom +
Goodness = Wisdom of a Good Mind.) Such
Wisdom, in the most exalted form, is handled
above, where the Wisdom of the pre-eminently
Good One is treated of. a
9. On the other hand, the False Wisdom has
regard to ends of a totally different character. It-
seeks to accomplish evil effects. It is the wisdom
of the wicked mind : its motives, therefore, are
malevolent. But to draw out this subject to good
purpose, and, by doing so, to illustrate yet farther
the distinction itself between the Good Wisdom,
and the Evil, let us go at once to the great fountain-
head and standard of our language, our English
Bible. Whatever on this subject is found depicted
plainly therein, may be taken for granted as being
in accordance with the true genius of our tongue,
if not in perfect consistence also with good usage.
Of course, in no other sense is the Bible referred to
here as an authority.
10. Not to be prolix, a single passage will
serve to illustrate the distinction in question. See
the General Epistle of James ; the Third Chapter,
from the 13th to the 17th verses inclusive. The
section begins by asking, Who is a wise man among
a Second Demonstration.
PROP. I.J THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 185
you ? taking ivise, perhaps, in the strictest sense.
Then the improper, the false, the evil Wisdom is
treated of. Afterwards, the proper or genuine, the
true, the beneficent Wisdom is introduced. In
the one case, as well as in the other, the Epistle-
writer employs the term a-otyla, >} cro(pla. The same
sort of broad distinction is to be met with in many
other places in the New Testament. But it will
suffice that we keep by the one place in the Epistle
of James, the practical Moralist among those
11. The passage in view, then, informs us,
that there is a Wisdom, whose origin is from
beneath, which is "earthly, sensual, (or animal,}
devilish," (or demon-sprung;} and a "Wisdom
which is from above," this Heavenly Wisdom being
"full of mercy, and good fruits," or benevolences.
In short, the one Wisdom is cruel ; the other,
12. From which it appears that the false
AVisdom, when fully developed, is cruel, or has
cruel ends in view in its aims. It uses the means
to produce cruelties. While, on the contrary, the
other kind of Wisdom is essentially beneficent : it
is gentle, and full of mercy.
13. Hence, the improper and false Wisdom is
the wisdom of the evil mind, and the proper and
true Wisdom is the wisdom of the good-minded
person. But whereas Wisdom, in and by itself, is
186 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
(as we have seen a ) nowise concerned with ends,
as in and by themselves, or is indifferent to
ends as such, whether they be good or be
evil ; the more natural, and the much more
common way, is by an association of a cer
tain kind. Wisdom and Goodness, conjoined in
the closest embrace, act together in unity, and
from oneness. But why is such conjunction
14. The question, and the answer, will bring
before us a circumstance worthy of observation.
When, in ordinary speech, Wisdom simply is spoken
of, the proper, the true, the good Wisdom only is
meant to be understood. The reason for the
phenomenon must be sought for in the depths.
The phenomenon, however, must have a sound
reason, how profound soever it be. The wisdom
of the good or gracious character is more natural
than the wisdom of the cruel character : such is
the phenomenon of which the cause is to be assigned,
and the cause of so remarkable a circumstance is
well entitled to our attention.
15. The reason is this; Cruel ( = devilish)
contrivances (i.e., adaptations of means to ends)
must be supposed to proceed from a Malevolent
Mind, and a Malevolent Spirit is itself unnatural :
it is in Nature, but not of Nature. Malevolence
betokens imperfection within its own sphere, and
a Proleg., & above, 7.
PROP. L] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 187
such imperfection cannot be, or be properly
considered to be, truly natural.
16. While, on the other hand, benevolent
contrivances betoken the action of a Loving Spirit,
and this is ever recognised as becoming and fit.
It harmonizes with Nature, as she truly expresses
herself. In Nature, it is also of Nature : in truth,
a very grand part of Nature herself.
17. No malevolence can be, or be supposed to
be, in the Supreme Cause, the Cause of causes, for
this very reason, that Malevolence implies the
unnatural, and the imperfect. And to bring
together the idea of the First Cause and that of
Imperfection, of what kind soever, or degree
soever, it matters not, were to associate together
things which are in irreconcilable opposition.*
Things which could be brought together only to
expose their irreconcilable variance and antagon
ism. They would ny asunder with an immense
rebound. On the contrary, all benevolent and
worthy consummations have their origin in God
the Lord, the fount of all creaturely life and
18. And thus it has come about that Wisdom
is associated by us with the Moral. If we speak of
men, Wisdom, as a birth of the Intellect (even as a
Minerva is feigned to have sprung from the brow
of Jove), and the Emotional or Moral part of our
a Div. III. Prop, i., 2, & Prop, ii., Dem. 4.
188 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
nature, are held to be in the most intimate
connection with each other.
From all that has been advanced, it will be
evident, that Wisdom, considered as an Attribute
of The Supreme, belongs, so far, to the Relative
Attributes, and that, moreover, it is not a pure
and simple Attribute, but forms one of the class
of Compound Attributes of which class, Holiness
(to which we are rapidly advancing) is another,
and a most notable instance. We have seen that
there are more elements than one in that complex
mode of mind which goes by the name of Wisdom.
It is, indeed, abundantly apparent, that Wisdom
is not one pure and simple element, in what
relation soever it stands to Mind generally.
God, the Lord, ivho is the Wisest of Beings, is,
necessarily, of ineffable Moral Purity.
1. According to our highest standards of
English, the term Holiness, when applied to the
Supreme Being, has two meanings. It means,
either, entire absolute Moral Purity ; or, the
PROP. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 189
Excellency involved in, and flowing from, the
confluence and conjunction of all the Attributes.
When each one of the Attributes is conjoined with
the rest, and the whole of the Attributes or
Excellencies are considered as an assemblage of
constituents acting together, a vision of Holiness,
in the comprehensive sense, is the result. The
same remark is applicable to the cognate words.
Holy, for instance, may be employed in one, or
other, of the two senses. The same sort of remark
might be extended to the corresponding words in
other languages, such as the Hebrew, representative
of the Shemitic class, and the Greek, as repre
senting the Japhetic, or Aryan, class of languages.
But it behoves us to be more particular with the
statement of the distinction of the meanings. The
distinction is a most important one, and carries
great things in its train.
2. In the first place, then, the term Holiness
is used as expressive of Moral Purity, or the
opposite of Moral Impurity. Hence, Holiness is
moral stainlessness, spotlessness, unsulliedness,
immaculateness, in fine, freedom from polluting
taint of any kind, in moral respects. And,
3. In the second place, Holiness is used to
express the combination of the Excellencies, even
the commingling lustre or glory of all the Divine
Attributes. It has regard to the union, and the
result of the union, of the Divine Attributes,
190 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
especially the Intellectual and Moral Attributes,
but emphatically the Moral Attributes ; and, of
the Moral Attributes, it regards emphatically the
presence of the Moral Purity of our Proposition.
4. It is only with the former of the two mean
ings, that we have to do as under this Proposition.
The other sense will fall to be handled in a
Proposition devoted to itself. a For the future,
then, Purity, or Moral Purity, shall be, almost
exclusively, employed to express the idea proper
to this place ; reserving Holiness, in the latter of
the two significations, for after consideration.
1. That God, the Lord, is necessarily of
ineffable Moral Purity, that is, cannot possibly be
considered as being, in any, even the least, respect,
Impure Morally ; shall be made as clear as any
truth can be. The proof lies not very far off, and
it will be found to be quite irresistible.
2. The reason why God, the Lord, must be
conceived of as Morally Pure, or cannot by
possibility be conceived of as being otherwise, is,
because tis most plain that Moral impureness
signifies, or involves, some defect or imperfection.
And no absurdity could be greater than the absurd
ity which would couple the idea of any defect or
a Succeed. Prop.
PROP. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 191
imperfection with God, the Lord.* What defect
or imperfection, of any kind, or degree, can there
be in that Being who is the subject of all the
predicates in our preceding Propositions ? The
preceding Demonstrations must all be taken now
for granted. What imperfection, then, can there
be in the One Necessary Being, of utmost Sim
plicity, who, being of Infinity of Expansion
and Duration, is Intelligent and All-knowing, All-
powerful, and entirely Free, completely Happy,
and perfectly Good ; who, in addition, is neces
sarily True, Faithful, inflexibly Just, altogether
Righteous, and most Loving, and withal of
absolute Wisdom ? To attribute any imperfection
to such a Being, were to utter a mere contra
3. Moreover, a stain of impurity must needs
be something impressed from without, or brought
about from within. In the case of the Lord God,
a stain would involve a change from the pre exist
ent immaculate cleanness, inasmuch as foulness
could never be considered, by even the wildest
flight of imagination, to be the original condition
of the subject of our Proposition, the Being to
whom so many excellencies do so undeniably
appertain. The foulness must needs be separable
from the subject of inhesion.
4. Now, a stain involving a change from the
a Vide Gen. Schol. under preced. Prop., 17.
192 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
preexistent immaculateness : In the first place,
nothing can be more palpable than that the Being
demonstrated in the preceding Propositions, cannot
be subject to being changed, or acted on, from
without. There can, indeed, be no without in
reference to the Substance that fills Infinite Space,
or is the Being of Infinity of Expansion, and that
inhabits Eternity, or is the One Being of Infinity
of Duration. And if it be so palpable that the
Lord God cannot be acted on from without, much
less (to speak so) can He be subject to be stained
from without, or by any object or cause without
5. And, in the second place, equally clear it is,
that no change, from a preexistent condition of
purity, can be conceived as passing upon the Lord
God from within Himself. For as to the supposi
tion of a change wrought from within in the case
under contemplation a change from immaculate-
ness to a state of some foulness or other, such
a supposition would involve as great an impossi
bility as can be, the supposition, to wit, of an
effect without there being any possible cause. To
assign, as the cause of a polluting impurity, the
Immaculate, and the absolutely Pure, were simply
to present an incongruous absurdity. An utterly
impossible and contradictious cause, is no cause,
and something more even a heap of nonsensical
PROP. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 193
6. The demonstration is, therefore, complete
and perfect, and, accordingly, we say, without
hesitation, that it has been irrefragably proved,
that God, the Lord, who is the Wisest of Beings,
is necessarily of ineffable Moral Purity.
7. God, the Lord, then, who is the Wisest
of Beings, is, necessarily, of ineffable Moral
THE MORAL PURITY, WHAT IT FUNDAMENTALLY INVOLVES,
AND REALLY CONSISTS IN.
1. The demonstration of the present proposi
tion might have been dispensed with, but for one
circumstance. In demonstrating the inflexible
Justice of God, a it was demonstrated that the
character of God is, with respect to Justice,
without flaw. The Divine Justice is perfect, or
altogether pure. And so of the rest of the Moral
Attributes. 1 We demonstrated the Attributes as
the necessary Modes of the One Necessary
Substance : which is just snying, in other
words, that the perfection of each Attribute, or
each Attribute in perfection, was demonstrated.
Nothing more could be righteously required.
Quite superfluous, to prove no decadence, no
deterioration, no decay, in necessarily existing
a Prop. iii. Div. III. > Vide Div. III. Sub-Div. ii.
194 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
Excellencies. A work of idle supererogation to
evince, that Perfect Attributes are Perfect.
2. A circumstance, however, intervenes, to
prevent us from arguing in such a manner. One
essential element in Moral Purity has not as yet
been touched on anywhere. It is incumbent on
us, therefore, to supply the desideratum, and to
shew how indispensable was a separate demon
stration under the present head.
3. In opening up this most important matter,
it will be necessary to take a more than ordinarily
extensive sweep. It has been demonstrated, that
the race of man began to be. a As a constituent of
the universe, there was a time when the race was
not, since the whole Material Universe itself had
an absolute commencement. 13 Whatever begins to
be must have a cause : the human race, therefore,
had a Creator.
4. A necessary consequence of man s having
had a Creator, is very weighty. Speaking
psychologically, man is but a congeries of certain
mental powers and faculties. From which un
questionable truth it is righteously deducible,
that each one of the original powers or faculties
of the human mind was the free bestowment of
the same First Cause.
5. To every distinct faculty or quality, and
relative perfection, of mind possessed congeni tally
a Schol. under Part iii. Div. II. b Sub-Prop. Part ii. Div. I.
PROP. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 195
by man, there must be a corresponding Attribute,
and absolute Perfection, in the mind of the
Creator, the Father of spirits : Otherwise, there
would be in the creature a perfection, without
there being aught answering thereunto in the
Creator. There would be a distinct quality of
mind which, with its subject of inhesion, began to
be, without, however, there having been any
cause whatsoever. An arrant absurdity. In fine,
tis an axiomatic truth, That an effect cannot
possess any original, distinct perfection, which is
not in the cause, either actually, or at least in a
higher degree. a
6. Now, tis unquestionable, that there is in
man the feeling, or there are the feelings, which
lead to marriage; and perhaps we shall not
greatly err if we give, as the result of the last
analysis of that feeling, a certain disposition for
communion, or, a disposition for a certain com
munion, to end by means of thorough unison
in complete union, and absolute oneness. The
question, thus, arises, Must there, therefore, be, in
first principles, a perfection, in man s Creator, the
Great First Cause of all things, corresponding to
that disposition for communion ? Indeed, we
shall not much err if we so estimate, and so use in
argumentation the cardinal feeling in view.
7. That the feeling indicated, to wit, the
:i Vide, supra, 4, Dem. Prop. iii. Div. III.
196 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
feeling which brings together individuals of
opposite sexes, strangers hitherto, for life-long
association, is a fundamental part of our mental
constitution ; this is undeniable. That, moreover,
the feeling is a distinct part of our nature, admits
of as little doubt. That it is not a mere imperfec
tion, but, on the contrary, is a true (relative)
perfection, is, also, a point which cannot be with
propriety contested. Call the feeling in question
2^assion, if you will ; still, tis certain and indis
putable, that the feeling does really exist : that
it is a radical and distinct part of man s nature,
and cannot be classed among the mere imperfections
and blemishes of our mental constitution. All
these are, indeed, points which the true psycholo
gist will readily concede. If one, through any
perverseness, will not admit that genuine conjugal
love, as an indispensable mental power or sus
ceptibility not to be confounded with any other,
presents the most heavenly sight to be seen on
earth, being too a most blessed thing in itself; he is
bound at least to give another and a better account
of the facts in human life which are patent to all.
8. The inference unavoidably deducible from
the great fact, or class of facts, adverted to, is, that
in the Creator, as Father of minds and First Cause,
there must be that absolute perfection, which, in
first principles, corresponds to the feeling in
question call it instinct or passion, or by what
PROP. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 197
name soever vou please. To deny this inference,
*/ 1 tf
were to deny the Axiom which has been laid down,
and founded on a : and deny the axiom in view,
and then Nothing, pure Nothing, might be the
cause of Something, yea, of all Things.
9. But if a true marriage is a most beautiful
and blessed thing, there is, alas ! a reverse side
to the picture. That which, in happy cases, is
developed into the beatitude of conjugal love, is,
in unprincipled or ill-regulated minds, manifested
in the hideous shape of violent, utterly lawless
passion. Become ungovernable, the perverted
feeling susceptible as it is of so great variation-
is capable of the most dreadful abuses. And just
in proportion to the excellency of true and pure
conjugal love, is the vileness of the unbridled
licentiousness, and demoralization, displayed in the
abandonment of fornication, or in the form of
hellish rebelliousness against the ordinances of
Heaven. The one is outward, and in the body ;
the other, inward, and in the mind : But both are
equally, or they equally involve, unclean adul
10. And as God the Lord is the Originator of
the blessedness of conjugal love, so He is utterly
and unalterably opposed, through the Perfect
Purity of His Nature, to that abuse to which we
have pointed. If He be the cause of the one ; so,
a TJi supra, % ">, cum loc. citat.
198 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
with reo-arcl to either of the others, there cannot be
anything in the Divine Mind but what is immut
ably opposed to it. To impurity of the character
indicated, there cannot be in God the Lord aught
at all corresponding. There is a correspondence
indeed but the correspondence is only productive
of, and manifested by, the most determined Con
trast, and perpetually warring Opposition.
11. Thus, Moral Purity makes secret allusion
always to a certain species of contrasted impurity.
But there is a farther and more profound arcanum,
well worthy of the deepest contemplation.
12. Of all the kinds of impurity which can
defile the soul of man, there is one kind which, by
emphasis, has received the name of "pollution."
The reason of this will take us at once among the
recesses of Nature s most hidden secrets. Tis not
of sexual impurity that we are now to treat, but
another and a much worse sort of impurity stands
before us as our dread, yet uneschewable, topic.
Our subject, however, is, unnatural sins or vices in
their generic aspect, not any one sin or vice
specially. Too dreadful a task would be involved
in the painting, in true colours, of any single
species of unnatural depravity. The most general
allusions must suffice. That there are enormities
so hideous that they cannot be so much as named
among us, tells its own tale. Nevertheless, such
PROP. II.] THE BEING AXD THE ATTRIBUTES. 199
portentous wickedness is, unquestionably, to be
found among men.
13. But at this point attention must be given
to a truth of great weight in order to the clear
elucidation of the subject. The Lord God is never
to be conceived of by us as existing without any
and all respect to sex. On the contrary, He is to
be considered all-sexual, in the sense that He
contains within Himself the first principles of the
perfections of both sexes. He is Male, but He
is not merely Male, or to the thorough exclusion
of any excellent principle serving as the ground
work of the creation of the Female. Else, how
could the Lord God be, as He i.s, the Creator of
the human race, with its male and female ? The
existence of the woman must be accounted for
somehow. If woman began to be as a distinct
unit created at first-hand, or without creaturely
mediation, the Lord God was her Creator, and a
first principle correspondingly must be supposed in
that First Cause. If, again, woman, being a
mediate formation, had no such Creator, then she,
as an individual, came into (not being, but)
separate being with the first out-going of sinfulness
in man, and, as separate, was but an imperfection
appertaining to the human creature as such. But
whichever hypothesis be adopted, it comes to the
same thin^. as the thoughtful student will not be
slow to understand. The human race is essentially
200 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
Male and Female ; and it began to be : so, it-
must have had a Creator. And the Creator of the
human race must have, in first principles, the
perfections of the same.
14. So, being such a Creator, the Lord God is
rightly deemed to be altogether Holy or Pure, in
direct contrast with every immoral human being
no matter what the sex giving its personality
up to the debasement, and untold wickedness
of the abominable pollution thus shudderingly
15. Indeed, it requires no stretch of intellect
to perceive, that, if the Lord God is rightly
conceived as being without taint, or the shadow of
taint, in respect of sexual impurity, as being, in
that respect, the altogether Pure, or Holy One ;
much more, must He be considered as the Holy
One in opposition to the worst kind of human, or,
rather, the worse than human, impurity and
depravity. Sexual impurities are, at any rate,
sins in the direction of nature, and not worse than
gross aggravations and coarse and vile exaggerations
of natural instincts, and tendencies ; while sins of
uncleanness against nature, are sins of the utmost
possible human (and only less than diabolical)
wickedness, in the very form of wickedness. In
truth, the opposition between the Purity of the
Holy One, and the impurity of an abandoned man,
becomes greater as the impurity, passing from one
PROP. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 201
stage to another, is increased by reaching to a yet
more monstrous wickedness.
16. In making the transition from sexual
excesses to unnatural vices, and the opposite to
these last in the character of The Supreme, we may
deem that we have passed to the region of the
inner ground of opposition. Having traced this
sort of impurity to its deepest point in interior
wickedness, we are necessarily arrived at the place
where the abstractest considerations are the most
17. The reason of the enormous heinousness
which attaches to this unnatural kind of wicked
ness, lies just in this, that here is an offence which
is, formally and expressly, a sin by a man against
himself, and his own nature, as such. The germ
of suicide and murder is here murder and suicide
18. In fine, the Lord God, considered as the
most Pure Being, must be set in opposition to that
sort of uncleanness most of all. The portentous
sin whatever the precise guise assumed is a
crime against Nature. While all other sins are,
more or less, in the direction of Nature ; this one
alone sins against Nature radically against Nature
herself, and as such. But (as has been decisively
demonstrated a ) God is the source and fount of
Nature : hence, He is the most Natural Being.
a Div. II. Parts ii. & iii., & Div. III. Prop, i., Sub-Prop., Schol.
202 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
The nature of the whole of the other is but an
efflux, and, in some respects, a resemblance, of
His Nature. Consequently, God the Lord must be
conceived of as being removed infinitely, as it
were from, and opposed to, the very appearance
of that portent among evil deeds.
19. The doer of such an enormity is striving
to overturn the whole course of nature. The
endeavour is but a beginning, but, in point of
consistency, there is really the germ of an attempt
to obliterate, with nature, its Divine Source. All
sin, indeed, lias, for its inmost essence, a principle
of hatred to the very existence of the Lord God,
and the order* of nature instituted by Him. Sin
would overthrow all. But some sins, more than
others, aim at the destruction of the foundations
of things. This sin, perhaps, most of all does so,
so far as possible to the human sinner. Every
man, therefore, avoiding the very appearance of
that awful evil, should reverence himself, the
creature, and the image, of the Uncreated One.
20. Emphatically, then, is the character of the
Lord God set against that sort of Impurity. By
reason of His ineffable Moral Purity, He is
opposed to that sort most of all.
Purity, as directly opposed to such impurity as
we have dared to glance at, can (as has been seen)
PROP. II.] THE BEIXG AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 203
be rightly ascribed to the Divine Mind ; and there
can be no direct opposition, proceeding from,
contrast, unless there be certain jwints of resem
blance between the two sources of the opposing forces.
This may be a profound truth, but tis none the
less true because of the profundity. In fact, but
for abstract, or most innerly grounded reasons, it
would be next to impossible to tell, and impossible
to tell well, why the Divine Cause of all things is
the purest morally. The doctrine might, no doubt,
be propounded without any strict proof being an
accompaniment of the promulgation ; and, as a
matter of fact, the Moral Purity of the Deity has
been taught, and most successfully taught, without
any but the most obvious reasons being assigned,
so far as anv reasons at all were assigned : the
truth being, that the doctrine was greatly rested
on the argument of the authority of the Promul-
gator. But the argument of authority being of no
weight with us, it is fortunate that we are enabled
to dispense with it. Metaphysically, it is quite
proper to ascribe to the Great Supreme that which
was, in point of fact, applied to Him by the most
excellent of the world s judges, the Shemitic seers
who caught sight of Divine truths by grand
intuitions. the seers, we repeat, among the
monotheistic and theological people of all the
nations of the earth. The Hebrew Legislator and
all the Prophets of the peculiar people, and the
204 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
Apostles of a later day, the Missionaries to all
Adamic peoples, all united in declaring that the
Lord God is the thrice Holy One, and that His
very soul hateth the unnatural sins which were
openly, and at all times, practised by the Heathen
on every side. The ancient method was by a
patent track, while our reasons are profound and
even occult : but both procedures are good, having
their foundations in the nature of things.
God, the Lord, who is the Wisest of Beings, and of
ineffable Moral Purity, is, necessarily, the
1. In entering upon the consideration of a
Proposition which forms a culminating point in
our progress, a recapitulation of matter already
advanced will be, to some extent, requisite. a There
may be even enlargement, in some directions, on
topics formerly touched. 81
2. The word Holy, and the cognate Holiness,
as applicable to the Divine Being, may be used in
the one, or the other, of two great senses. 1. The
word may be employed to denote Moral immaculate-
ness, or perfect Purity or Pureness. 2. It may be
a Proleg. preced. Prop.
PROP. III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 205
taken as standing for the result of the Excellencies of
the Divine Nature being united in a commingling
whole, and for the gloriousness thence arising.
And this latter is the sense in which uniformly
Holiness is to be understood as under the present
Proposition. In truth, the meaning affixed here to
the term is the strict and proper meaning of the
3. Yet, although such the true import of the
word, one thing ought never to be lost sight of,
namely, that the Holiness subsumed by this
Proposition denotes the excellency of God, the
Lord, flowing from the whole of His Attributes,
with, however, an onphatic weight attached always
to Pureness Morally. The Holiness regards the
union, and the result of the union, of the Divine
Attributes especially, the Intellectual and Moral,
but emphatically the Moral Attributes ; and, of the
Moral Attributes, the presence of the Moral Purity
of the preceding Proposition is imperatively
4. In that Proposition, the Holiness of The
Supreme, in the first of the senses, was demon
strated : and our business now is to prove, in a
manner equally irrefragable, the Holiness of the
Deity, in the other, and more strict and proper
5. But ere we advance to the demonstration
itself, it may be well to illustrate the two differing
206 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
meanings, by an appeal to the best usage. In
both the preceding Proposition, and above, the
distinction has been formally stated, but as yet
the reader has had no opportunity of observing the
distinction embodied in actual examples. It is
one thing to state the distincton between the two
senses in an abstract manner, and it is another to
bring out the distinction in a more concrete sort
of way, or by vivid illustrations drawn from the
worthiest sources. It shall be our present business,
therefore, to illustrate the important distinction in
question by a reference to the best authorities
known to the student of the English language.
6. Now, tis allowed, by all competent persons,
that, for general purposes, we have no better
standard of English than our Bible in the vernacu
lar. But farther, and more particularly, we can
apply to no other source than our English Bible,
with regard to a large class of words. For terms
answering to a number of Moral and Religious
ideas, no other course than an appeal to the
treasuries of the Old and New Testaments, is
practicable. We might, of a truth, go elsewhere,
but the authorities themselves would be found to
have drawn from those very sources of the various
books of the two Testaments, as their oivn fountain-
head. Where, indeed, shall we find words ade
quately expressive of the awful Purity, and the
glorious Holiness, our theme, except in the glowing
PROP. III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 207
descriptions of the rapt Hebrew seers, the true
prophets for all times ? Let the fact be accounted
for how it may, the fact is, and will remain, that
we have no other repertory at all suitable to go to
for words answering to our grandest Moral and
Religious ideas than our correspondents to the
Testament in Hebrew, and the Testament in Greek.
7. It need scarcely be said or rather repeated,
for the statement has been made once and again,
that, in this demonstration, the argument of
authority were quite out of place. In citing, there
fore, passages of Sacred Scripture, no purpose but
one is entertained, the citations being made for the
sole sake of illustrating in, however, appropriate
language the reality of the distinction, by a
display of the two true meanings of our term.
8. As instances of the use of the term in the
sense of Moral Purity, the following passages
may be adduced :
"Ye shall not make yourselves abominable with
any creeping thing that creepeth, neither shall ye
make yourselves unclean with them, that ye should
be defiled thereby. For I am the Lord your God
[Jehovah your Elohim] : ye shall therefore sanctify
yourselves [make yourselves holy], and ye shall be
holy, for I am holy ; neither shall ye defile your
selves with any manner of creeping thing that
creepeth upon the earth. For I am the Lord that
bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be
208 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
your God : ye shall therefore be holy, for I am
holy." Leviticus, xi. 43, 44, 45. "Give not that
which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your
pearls before swine, lest they trample them under
their feet, and turn again and rend you."
Matthew, vii. 6. " He that is unjust, let him be
unjust still : and he which is filthy, let him be
filthy still : and he that is righteous, let him be
righteous still : and he that is holy, let him be
holy still." Revelation, xxii. 11.
9. To which might be appended many
additional felicitous examples. But the selection
made will suffice to illustrate the meaning of holy,
in the more restricted sense of the word. That
ceremonial physical cleanness was but the outside
emblem of Purity within even of that Moral
Purity which was really the ultimate end of the
great Lawgiver of the Hebrews, and the other
penmen, his countrymen.
10. Advance we next to passages which have
reference to Holy, or Holiness, in the more
comprehensive of the two senses. The following
will afford illustrations of the term when standing
for the Excellency necessitated by the totality of
the Divine Attributes :
" There is none holy as the Lord [Jehovah] : for
there is none beside Thee : neither is there any
rock like our God [our Elohim]."- 1 Samuel, ii.
2. " They (the fathers of our flesh) verily for a
PROP. III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 209
few days chastened us after their own pleasure ;
but he (God) for our profit, that we might be
partakers of his holiness." Hebrews, xii. 10.
" Who shall not fear thee, Lord, and glorify thy
name ? for thou only art holy : for all nations
shall come and worship before thee." Revelation,
11. Numerous apt exemplifications of the same
meaning might be adduced. No place, however, is
more memorable than the august passage in the
sublimest of prophets the sublimest, perhaps, of
all writers where are described the effects, upon
the most excellent Intelligences of our universe, as
well as upon the seer himself, our representative in
that glorious scene, the effects, we repeat, of the
vision of the unutterable Holiness of the Lord of
the hosts of all the starry continents. " I saw also
the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up,
and his train filled the temple. Above it stood the
Seraphim : each one had six wings ; with twain he
covered his face, and with twain he covered his
feet, and with twain he did fly. And one cried
unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the
Lord of hosts : the whole earth is full of his glory.
And the posts of the door moved at the voice of
him that cried, and the house was filled with
smoke. Then said I, "Woe is me ! for I am
undone ; because I am a man of unclean lips, and
I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips :
210 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
for mine eyes have seen the king, the Lord of
hosts." Isaiah, vi. 1-5. One of the sublimest
places in the sublime Apocalypse is founded upon
that description. " And the four living creatures
[<Sa = the four representatives of the created
universe] had each of them six wings about him ;
and they were full of eyes within : and they rest
not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord
God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come."
Revelation, iv. 8.
12. In giving a lucid, and, at same time,
vivid and fervid idea of the Attribute or Excellency
under consideration, no other language could
approach the capacities and aptitudes of that
language. No other language can equal in force
and complete suitableness the language of our Book
of books when we would give expression to the
heights of Moral and Religious ideas. Without
the aid in question, we should have endeavoured
in vain to convey, by words, any true idea of that
Holiness which springs from the concatenation of
Attributes, each one of which is, singly, an
Excellency in itself.
1. That the whole is equal to the sum of the
parts, is a position equally self-evident as this, that
the ivhole is greater than its part, which is one of
PROP. III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 211
the preliminary Axioms of the Geometricians.
And it will be seen, that the Proposition now in
hand is on the same footing of indisputability with
2. For, taking Holy in the sense of our
Proposition, that is, taking Holiness to denote
the excellency of the Lord God as implied by, or
flowing from, the unition of the whole of His
Attributes ; there is needed but the simplest
application of the doctrine, The whole is equal to
the sum of the parts. Take the predicates in all
the preceding Propositions, and unite them in one
predicate, applying this to the same subject as
that which appears in the last demonstrated
Proposition in our series ; and you have, of course,
a predicate, or whole, expressive of what is equal
to the sum of all the individual predicates, or
3. Our application of that self-evident doctrine,
is, indeed, unassailable. Tis quite evident (whether
it be self-evident or no) that the Being to whom
must be attributed each one of the Attributes, or
Excellencies, as these have been educed in the
foregoing demonstrations, must be in possession of
that greater, or (we may say) absolute, Excellence
which is the necessary result of the total attri
bution. He who is conform to each predicate,
one after the other, is, at the same time, conform to
all the predicates together. Quite palpably, and all
212 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
undeniably, is this so. No position in the Mathe
matics is more certain.
4. Doubtless, then, Holiness may be considered
as if it were but one Attribute, and no more ; yet,
none the less true is it that the Holiness which
expresses the universal Excellence of God, the
Lord, is a result, and the resultant of all the
other Qualities or Properties of the Divine Nature.
The prominence, in the view, of the attribute in
question, as one attribute, may affect the whole
vision : nevertheless, the attributes, whose unition
yields us this Holiness, are clearly distinguishable
from the glory which is the result of the congeries
5. The Lord God is in possession of so many
Attributes each one of which is an Excellency in
itself: Therefore, He is in possession of that far
greater Excellency which is the result of the
unition of all the individual Attributes or
Excellencies. This, the point to which we have
reached, is a most certain truth, and it forms the
foundation of the doctrine of the one great Attri
bute, or Super-Excellency of Holiness.
6. But there is a truth beyond that to which
we have attained hitherto. The ground on which
we have been standing is but the vestibule of a
much grander temple of truth, into which we may,
so far, enter. In the region beyond our present
stand-point, may be beheld, in a far-off way,
PROP. III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 213
indeed, and through a mitigating medium, a
dazzling, and, ill sooth, blinding glory, which far
excelleth that which is the pure resultant of the
totality of the attributes, or individual excellencies.
That which is glorious, may be conceived to
have no glory, by reason of the glory which
7. There is a law of mind to which very little
attention has ever been paid : a grand law it is,
however : a supreme law in Intellectual and Moral
matters super-eminently dominating in the Moral
region of Mind. The law in question is this, that,
with regard to an assemblage of mental excellencies,
the position, The whole is equal to the sum of the
parts, when applied to the Supreme Mind, gives
place to this other and higher containing law, that
from the whole, or all the assembled, united parts,
there results an Excellency or Glory greater far
than could result from, or can be expressed by,
the mere sum of the parts, or the imition of all
the individual Attributes. Given the unition,
each one of the Excellencies increases, or intensifies,
the action of each one and all of the others : so
that the resultant bears no (definite) proportion
to the pure sum of all the Qualities or Properties
of the Substrate.
8. For evidence of the existence of the law,
you may take a survey of the things of creation :
for, the law of, or rather to, the creature, is
214 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
directly connected with the fiat of the Lawgiver.
No Law-giver, no law. In Man s little world, we
may behold images, or reflections in small, of that
great truth ; and, in this direction, any one may
verify the law to what extent he pleaseth. Nay-
leaving behind the whole Animal Kingdom, and
betaking ourselves, at once, to the Inorganic
portion of our kosmos, we may see, if we use our
eyes aright, plentiful evidence of the prevalence of
the same law, only the law raised there to a
higher reduced here to a lower power. Exempli
gratid, in chemical combinations themselves, we
may see adumbrations of the higher, or wider law,
which holds so remarkably in Moral matters, or in
the supreme world of Mind.
9. Morally speaking, then, a confluence of
perfections, say the confluence of the Perfections
of the Divine Mind, as these have severally been
demonstrated, the confluence, we repeat, and
conjunction of Perfections is equal to not the
product of each single Attribute added to the
remainder : but the conjunction itself, and any
mere resultant of it, is surpassed by the far greater
glory which expresses the effect of the unition of
the Excellencies, as each individual Excellency
intensifies the action of every other one, and of
all the rest. Each Attribute increaseth the action
of every other, to an inexpressible pitch of intensity.
From the very nature of the case, it must be so.
PROP. III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 215
10. Just as in a grand display of musical
harmony. The harmony which is so indescribably
entrancing, is not merely the amount of the
different volumes of sounds, from so many instru
ments, and so many throats, added together
but is a something resulting somehow from that
union, but not purely co-incident with it. So, in
a beautiful landscape, or painting of it, the felt
beauty is not merely a collection of so many
primary colours, and shades of colours of all kinds,
with their various blendings, in their respective
subjects of inhesion, but it is a something,
produced by, indeed, yet different from, and
superadded to, the assemblage of colours, and
shadings, in all their groupings.
11. Thus, it is a great law of Mind, that
Moral Perfections, co-existing harmoniously in the
same subject, are much intensified. AVhat, then,
must be the glory of the Divine Perfections
meeting and embracing each other the multi
plicity of intensifying and intensified Excellencies
absorbed in the wondrous unity ? That glory
must be altogether unapproachable by mortal eye,
or human conception. No created mind can ever
see (save through the veil) that vision, and live.
12. From all which, it is manifestly evident,
that God the Lord, who is the Wisest of Beings,
and of ineffable Moral Purity, is, necessarily, the
Holiest of all.
216 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
13. God the Lord, then, who is the Wisest of
Beings, and of ineffable Moral Purity, is, neces
sarily, the Holiest One.
THE HOLINESS AND SIN NOT ABSOLUTELY CONTRADICTORY
1. What chiefly distinguishes Holiness as an
actual existent force in the absolute universe, is its
contrariety to Sin, and (the effect of the con
trariety) opposition thereto. The contrariety in
question may indeed be said to be a distinguishing
characteristic of Holiness. Yet such contrariety
cannot be of the essence of the attribute, because
Holiness, as result of all the other necessary
attributes, is inseparable from the Divine Nature,*
and Sin appertains to but the temporal region.
That cannot be essential to Holiness, or any
fundamental Attribute of God the Lord, which
had its beginning in Time, and which is, itself, but
departure from, and violation of, the Nature, the
Attributes, the Laws of God, the Lord, which last,
again, are but the outside expression of His Nature.
Unless, therefore, Sin be laid down as necessary to
the system of things ; if, in other words, Sin be
but accident, or incidental to the essential constitu
tion of things as existing absolutely in the
a Demonstration above.
PROP. III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 217
universe : then Sin, as reality, cannot stand as
indispensable correlate to Holiness. The necessary
Holiness of God the Lord, and Sin as accomplished
fact in the universe, cannot correlate each other.
2. The actuality of the contrariety and opposi
tion alluded to, together with the reason thereof,
are palpable enough. Holiness is the excellency
or perfection of God the Lord, resulting from the
totality of His Attributes. Sin denies the
perfection. Not only does Sin go contrary to the
fact of the Attributes, and the resulting Holiness :
Sin denies virtually the true excellence of the
Holiness, and, with it, the being of all the
Attributes. It may even be said, that Sin seeks
to eat into (so to speak) and destroy the very
throne of the Lord God, the Holy One. For Sin
is not merely an inactive passive principle, flowing
from a pure negation, or privation : since Sin, as
concentrated source of evil in the universe, is
active and virulent, and most virulent in its
3. Though Sin be not the correlate to Holi
ness, absolutely speaking, yet tis true that Sin,
being viewed as mere pure potency, stands in
unavoidable antithesis to, if not in never-ceasing
conflict with, the Holiness of the Lord God. Yet
the Holiness, as necessary result of the necessary
Attributes, cannot be regarded as the unceasing
and inevitable antagonist of the enemy, Sin.
218 THE AEGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
Given Sin, given ever present hatred and anta
gonism to Holiness : Yet, given Holiness, there
does not necessarily emerge the everlasting opposi
tion to, and conflict with, the temporal inimical
force. The one is necessarily existing : not so the
other. Hence the necessity of not losing hold of
a distinction so essential, arid withal so important.
THE HOLINESS AND NEVER-CEASING SIN INCOMPATIBLE.
1. As Goodness and Love demand the
cessation, at some point in duration, of misery,
their opposite and foil ; a so Holiness, the glorious-
ness of the Divine Existence, demands, in like
manner, the cessation, at some period, of sin,
demands the entire and ceaseless cessation of all
sin, moral defilement, degradation, degenerate
disfigurement, of all kinds.
2. Love in the Lord God, and misery in man,
as end in itself, are irreconcilable. The two things,
the Love of the Creator, and the purposed misery
of the creature, for the misery s own sake, are
absolutely, and most clearly, inconsistent with each
other. They are inimical forces which by no
possibility can ever coalesce anywhere in the
compass of wide nature. a But not more are Love
and Misery incompatible, than are Holiness and
a Schol. in., Prop, iv., Div. III.
PROP. III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 219
never-ceasing Sin. Not more, but less if less be
possible : as by the preceding Scholium has been
made abundantly apparent.
3. Love, from beginningless sources ; that
suffereth long, and is kind that never faileth ;
sempiternal Love, exhaustless, Thou hast companion
fit in that Holiness, which, as a consuming fire,
struggles to consume the potency first, and, last,
the very being of Sin. Sin, ugly and deadly
excrescence upon the body of man s world that,
as a malignant cancer, eats away, bit by bit, the
member it preys upon that, as a loathsome
leprosy, gradually but too surely destroys the body
it disfigures, and disgraces ; has, for only possible
issue, entire annihilation. Sin, devouring, devour
ing, is a gigantic parasite which, last of all, does
away with itself.
THE NEGATIVE MORAL PURITY AND THE POSITIVE HOLINESS,
IN FUNDAMENTAL AGREEMENT.
1. Having considered Holiness in its two fold
character as perfect Moral Pureness, a and as
universal Mental Perfectness b we are prepared to
weigh the relation which the one bears to the
other. Both characteristics are expressed by the
same term, but it has been seen that they are
distinguishable, and how much they differ, from
a Div. IV. Prop. ii. b Div. IV. Prop. iii.
220 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
each other. Yet, have they, in reality, a funda
mental agreement ? Whatever outside appearances
may suggest, are those two things in radical
2. What, if we perceive good reasons for
coming to the conclusion, that the Moral Purity
of the penultimate Proposition, and the universal
Holiness of this last Proposition, do not, after all,
differ in so pronounced a manner as may have
been suggested by a cursory examination of that
precise topic ? In a word, it is our task in this
place to point out that inner agreement which
exists between the two things, the themes in those
3. What, then, is entire absolute Moral purity ?
It signifies, that, in no one respect, is there any,
even the least, spot of impurity. What, now,
does this involve ? It involves, that, after a
review of all the Attributes, one by one, each one
is reported to be void of the slightest taint. So
that, in such respect, the presence of all the Attri
butes is assumed, and a judgment is pronounced,
declaring that all the Attributes are perfect, or
altogether pure ; not one of them having the
faintest shadow of defilement.
4. It seems to follow, that the proof of
Holiness, in this sense of the term, may rightly be
called the negative proof.
5. What, next, is Holiness, in the compre-
PROP. III.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 221
hensive sense, or as standing for the totality
of the Divine Excellencies ? It signifies the
presence of all the Attributes, in all their per
fection. It involves that Super-Excellency, or
Excellent Glory, which is the resultant of all
the individual Excellencies acting in harmonious
unison, and intensifying each other in all-perfect
6. May not this be said to be the positive
aspect of the same thing : and may not the proof
be denominated the positive proof, as contra
distinguished from the other ?
7. Finally, the one method declares : All the
Attributes being surveyed, one by one, there is not
the slightest taint of impurity or imperfection in
any one of them all. The other declares : All the
Attributes, in all their perfections, are present,
and from their commingling, and intensifications,
a great glory is the necessary result. Glory,
indeed, so dazzling, as to be insupportable by
1. It need scarcely be observed, that the
Attributes of this Division are, as a whole, to be
reckoned as belonging to the great Moral group.
The same Attributes, too, are members of the large
Psychical class. But the enunciation most apposite
to this place, is, that the setting forth of the
222 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. IV.
distinctively Complex or Compound Attributes
2. The next Division shall carry on, and shall
also close, the Attributes of the Psychical class.
Yea, as the handling of the Transcendent Excel
lencies shall not be, and, sooth to say, cannot be,
without reference to all the Attributes, of what
kind soever, the Division in question shall be not
only the fifth, but must be the last too.
Div. V.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 223
THE TRANSCENDENT EXCELLENCIES.
The Lord God, who is the Holiest One, is neces
sarily the Self -Beautiful, and the All-Perfect
1. Keeping out of view, distinctively, the
Natural Modes, a there remain the Intellectual , b and
the Moral Attributes, and the Attributes which,
being compounded of the others, are Complex. 1
Now, to say that the combined Intellectual and
Moral Attributes are not Excellencies, would be
radically tantamount to saying that those Attri
butes are not Attributes. And it shall be our
business to evince, that the allegation that those
Moral Excellencies are not Beautiful, would be all
one with saying, that those Excellencies are not
Excellencies at all. Therefore (supposing the proof
to be eminently satisfactory) those Intellectual and
Moral Attributes are truly Excellencies, and the
Excellencies are Beautiful the Beautiful Modes of
being of the All-Beautiful One who is the Sub-
* Div. I. Div. II. Div. III. d Div. IV.
224 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
stratum of them all. Such is, in outline, the
course to be pursued. The Moral Excellencies
will be seen to be Beautiful, each individual
Excellency being Beautiful. And, although the
Intellectual Attributes may not be always expressly
mentioned, it is yet to be understood that the
Moral Excellencies treated of are ever accompanied
by the Intellectual Attributes as the inseparable
2. One of the Axioms on which this demon
stration is, to a certain extent, founded, is, Every
position which ive cannot but believe, is a necessary
truth.* 1 That proposition which men, everywhere
and at all times, must believe, or which is neces
sarily believed by them, is, of course, a necessary
truth to them : And what is a necessary truth to
men, as men, is, to them, a necessary truth
absolutely. Every position, then, which we cannot
but believe, is a necessary truth. But, we cannot
but believe that the Moral Excellencies with which
we are concerned, that is, the Moral Excellencies
or Attributes demonstrated, in the previous
Propositions, are Beautiful things, yea, the most
Beautiful of all the objects of thought. Therefore,
that those Moral Excellencies are Beautiful, is a
necessary truth. These propositions constitute a
valid act of reasoning, namely, a syllogism of the
First Figure, and in the First Mood, or, they are,
a Div. III. Prop. i. 1, d aliis locis.
PROP. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 225
at least, easily reducible to such. Thus, we have
here an instance of legitimate ratiocination.
3. The second, or minor, proposition, namely,
We cannot but believe that those Moral Excel
lencies are Beautiful, yea, most Beautiful, is the
only one requiring, or admitting of, proof ; and the
proof shall be furnished straightway. In fact, the
truth of the proposition is easily evinced, as the
proposition is very near to carrying its own
evidence along with itself.
4. As to that proposition, then, it is to be
observed that it rests, for its truth, upon the
pronouncement of a great law valid universally.
It is a law of mind, valid universally, that Moral
Excellencies, in general, or as such, are Beautiful :
yea, that Moral Excellencies, of the highest degree,
or as they exist in the Supreme Mind, are the most
Beautiful of all Beautiful things. In particular, it
is a fixed, unalterable law of our moral nature to
be convinced that Moral Excellencies generally,
or simply as being so, are Beautiful : and we are
compelled, by the constitution of our minds, to
pronounce the universality of the law ; it is a law
applicable to all Minds without exception. In
truth, the one position could not be believed
without the other. The one implies the other.
It comes, in short, to this, that in the proposition
which we are handling the minor of the syllogism
we have a self-evident proposition. If it be not
226 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
intuitively evident, that Moral Excellencies are
Beautiful, the position is the very next thing to
5. Moral Excellencies, then, are Beautiful :
and the Moral Excellencies, the existence of which
has been demonstrated in the foregoing Division,
are the most Beautiful of all. Moral Excellencies
are Beautiful, by virtue of a law of mind, which,
as a first principle, or necessary truth, Conscious
ness testifies ; and the true testimony of Con
sciousness, in an affiair of this kind, admits of no
questioning. There can be no appeal from the
court of Consciousness, in a matter to which the
judgment of the court is fairly applicable. It is,
thus, a necessary truth, that the Moral Excellencies,
as modes of being of the great Substrate of all
being, are the most Beautiful objects of thought
in the mighty universe of universal mind.
6. Not, indeed, that those stupendously perfect
Moral Excellencies which have been specially under
consideration, nor any moral Excellencies, speak
ing in a general way, are the only Beautiful
things. By no means. Moral Excellencies are,
of a truth, Beautiful, yea, the most Beautiful of
all things : but they are not the only beautiful
things. They are but the most Beautiful of
beautiful things. Many things perhaps, many
classes or kinds of things are beautiful. Some
more so than others. Those, most of all : and, of
PROP. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 227
those the Moral Excellencies of the Being of beings
most of all again. Who could doubt, even for one
moment, whether such Attributes or Excellencies
as consummate Happiness, and perfect Goodness,
Trueness, Faithfulness, Righteousness and Justness,
all in the highest degree, and essential Lovingness,
together with absolute Wisdom, entire Moral
Purity, and universal Holiness, all existing neces
sarily and indefectibly, and in indissoluble associa
tion with each other, and with perfect Intellectual
Attributes, to say nothing of the inseparable
Natural Modes of being ; who could doubt
whether such Super-Excellent Qualities of Mind
be most Beautiful, or no ? One might as soon
doubt whether there be any Beauty at all : and,
in truth, the one doubting would be almost
identical with the other.
7. Unquestionably, the law which has been
referred to is an abiding law of our minds. If
there be sucli a thing as Beauty in the absolute
universe, Beauty is to be found associated with
might we say, identified with ( Moral Excellency,
of the highest or intensest possible kind, and
which is itself in the most intimate consociation
with Intellectual Supremacy. Moral Excellencies
are, in fact, most Beautiful properties of Mind,
but to combine them in thought with Intellectual
Perfections is to raise them to the highest pitch
of possible Beauty. Such union would be com-
228 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
parable to the conjunction of The True and The
Good or that of Righteousness ( = Justice) and
Love ( = Mercy). Indeed, the union spoken of
would be almost, if not quite, tantamount to that
conjunction. The latter is little else than a more
generalized expression for the former. If absolute
Righteousness, and Lovingness, and Purity, and
universal Holiness be not Beautiful, there is no
Beauty in the universe. If there exist anywhere
Beauty, those Qualities or Perfections are Beautiful
yea, most Beautiful.
8. What has been delivered is the exposition
of a grand law of things, a necessary truth in
relation to the world of Mind. We cannot but
believe that Moral Excellencies, or Perfections, are
most Beautiful in themselves, and every position
which we cannot but believe, is a necessary truth.
9. We may, then, conclude for it has been
clearly evinced that The Lord God is most
Beautiful ; and, being of Infinity of Duration, or
unoriginated, He is necessarily the Self-Beautiful.
10. But tis possible that every proposition
which the wit of man ever pronounced may be
denied, and we shall suppose that our more
general position, Moral Excellencies are Beautiful,
(involving as it does the more particular one, The
Moral Excellencies, par excellence, are most
Beautiful,) is denied denied by some person or
other, by some one individual, or class of men. It
PROP. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 229
is denied, then, that moral excellencies are beautiful ;
and, indeed, every position which men could adopt,
men can reject : Ay, men can most easily reject
any position, if the utmost perversity be no
appreciable hindrance in the way of the rejection.
Few, in truth, are the propositions which have
never been called in question anywhere.
11. Let us suppose, then, that our position is
actually called in question, by a doubter or caviller.
Let us, moreover, put the matter of the doubt in
the most formidable way conceivable.
1 2. Suppose, therefore, that a sceptic, animated
(if you like) by materialistic tendencies, affirms
that it is not true that, generally speaking, Moral
Excellencies are Beautiful. Beauty is, quoth our
dogmatising sceptic, not a possible predicate of the
subject, Moral Qualities. The term is highly
inapplicable here. Beauty is a word which ought
to be confined to the objects of our senses the
sense of sight in particular. In fact, beautiful is
predicable of only the things of time and sense, if,
indeed, the term be applicable to any object which
is not an object of sight. Something to be seen by
the ei/e : such is the proper indispensable condition
of being beautiful.
13. It must be granted, that this objection is
a wide one. It goes very far, or sinks very deep.
According to it, no character, as an assemblage of
moral properties, existing in even the highest
230 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
degree of perfectness in any mind, is or can be
beautiful. Beauty may be in this landscape, or in
that ; but beauty can by no means be in the mind,
or any way predicable of the mind, of the beholder
of the landscape. The beauty is solely an outward
quality ; it exists in the landscape beheld : it is
nowise dependent on the mind beholding the
collection of (primary, and secondary ?) qualities.
14. Thus, the most admirable and loveable
character ever existent on earth, or delineated by
the pen of man, or imagined in the heart of man,
is not beautiful. The best moral character
istics ever united in any mind have no form or
comeliness : there is no beauty there. The
objection, in one regard, is an old one : it is as
ancient as nearly two millenniums can make it to
15. Let it not be imagined, for a single instant,
that an intention of denying the force of the
objection is entertained. On the contrary, the
intention is to grant it, and found upon it. The
objection, in all the truth and force it may have,
shall be admitted for the purpose of turning it to
account by making it the source and the vehicle of
an additional argument an argument of the very
best description, because an argument furnished
by opponents themselves. It shall be shown, that,
on the theory of this objection being true, the
Lord God will be the Self-Beautiful. The objection
PROP. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 231
itself will evince, that the Lord God is the most
Beautiful of all.
16. As often as, in these latter portions of our
demonstration, we speak of taking any survey of
the things of and in our kosmos, creation, as fact,
is the postulate. That which was proved, in the
earlier Divisions, a is to be taken for granted at
present. The material universe itself, and every
succession of objects in it in particular, the race
of man, each and all of these, being finite in
duration, began to be. a Having begun sometime
to be, they were caused, and the Cause, or Creator,
was the One Being of Infinity of Expansion and of
Duration, a the great Substrate. These positions,
all proved in formerly occurring places, are postu
lates now. Creation, then, the creation of all
things, is our postulate here. In possession of such
postulate, it is quite legitimate, and in perfect
accordance with the best method, b to appeal to
universal nature as the work of its Creator and
Fashioner, and Preserver, whose Laws, which,
rightly understood, are an outward expression of
His Character, which again results from His
Nature, c regulate the entire kosmos, and every
department of it. The Laws of Nature are simply
the exponents, being the consequence, of His Will.
a Viz. Div. I. Part ii., & Div. II. Part ii., &c.
h Confer, ut supra, Div. III. Prop. iii. Dem. 2-5 inclusive.
c Vide Div. III. Prop, iii., Schol. Sub-Schol. II. 1.
232 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
The Laws of Nature are but the Creator s Will in
continuous or sustained action.
17. The postulate in question, as our premiss,
is now to be made use of, or applied to the point
in hand. The conclusion from the permiss but
remains to be drawn. That conclusion, however,
is by no means difficult to be perceived. In sooth,
it cannot fail to be palpably discerned.
18. Our world, the world on which we stand,
as the theatre of our varied preceptions, contains
many fair landscapes, one landscape differing from
another landscape in beauty. But the world itself,
and all that it contains, are the workmanship of
the great Being, even the Lord God, who was the
contriver, the maker, the fashioner, of every beauti
ful object in every beautiful scene. But, as the
cause must (from the necessity of the case) possess,
cither actually, or in a higher degree, every
excellency which the effect displays ; so, the Creator
of all the diversified beauties of nature must Himself
possess, in greater perfection too, the very beauties
which His own creation unfolds to the admiring
vision of His representative on earth. That man,
the image in little, perceives the beautiful, were of
itself sufficient evidence that the grand Exemplar
19. Therefore, if (as the objector affirms)
beauty be discoverable in only outward scenes, and
the objects of sight, these, as effects of the
PHOP. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 233
contrivance and skill of the mighty Workman,
shew forth the beauty which is in the mind of
Him whose hand formed all these things. He who
produced all beautiful things is Himself, the source
of them, the Beautiful Being. That the Author of
all Beautiful things should Himself be destitute of
Beauty, were a position incredible, impossible, most
monstrously absurd. The Author of the beautiful
in nature must be Beautiful in Himself.
20. And adding to the ground thus gained, by
legitimate conquest, the former lawful possessions,
we do attain, once more, to the vision of the Lord
God, the Beautiful One, even the Self-Beautiful.
21. This is He who is the Good in itself, the
True in itself, the Beautiful in itself. This is the
altogether Good, and True, and Lovely. In
Himself. First Good, First True, First Fair.
2 2. But having fallen upon a certain track, let
us pursue it, taking heed whither it may conduct
us. We have been led to see (and indeed to say)
that the Supreme Mind is All-Beautiful, because
the cause must be, in due order, more perfect
than the effect. In truth, the Mind which is over
all, because the Creator and Sustainer of all, must,
in respect of Beauty, be All- Perfect.
$ 23. But, in the same way, or for precisely
the same reason, that Supreme Mind must be
Perfect in all other regards too. The same reason
234 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
which shews the Lord God, the Supreme Mind,
to be sovereign in Beauty, shews the same Mind
of minds to be Perfect in all other excellent
respects. The Perfection of Beauty, the Lord God
is the All-Perfect.
24. But, indeed, a very short, and direct a
priori route to the position, that the Lord God is
All-perfect, yea, the All-perfect One, was always
open to us. It has been demonstrated, that the
Lord God is the Most Holy One, as the possessor
of all the individual Attributes which had been
exhibited in succession. a Now, because so uni
versally Holy, the Lord God must, therefore,
be the All-perfect One. Each single Attribute
is an Excellency which is another way of
stating, that each Attribute or Excellency is a
Perfection : and the totality of the Perfections
constitutes All-perfectness. Tantamount to All-
perfectness are the Perfections in union and com
25. Nevertheless, something was yet lacking.
The enumeration of the Attributes leading to the
demonstration of Holiness might have been
incomplete. Some property or quality of mind,
worthy of being ascribed to the Mind of minds,
might have been omitted : as, in point of fact, the
quality, or perfection, of Beautifulness was omitted,
from the list of Attributes separately demonstrated ;
a Div. IV. Prop. iii.
PROP. L] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 235
and, as a matter of course, it appeared as no item
in the demonstration relating to the conjunction
of Excellencies entering into the universal Holiness.
Whereas, the All-perfectness now under notice as
a predicate, is intended to comprehend under it
every Excellency of Mind, of possible existence,
which is not (as well as which is) already compre
hended among the Attributes in any way demon
26. The particular demonstration now in view
will, therefore, be of this character, or to this
effect : The Lord God is the Most Holy One, as
the subject in which so many Excellencies as were
severally specially demonstrated do exist or reside.
And being the Most Holy One, in that universal
sense, He must be also in possession of all
other mental or spiritual Excellencies, if other
there be. He who, being over all, is Perfect as to
so many Attributes, must be likewise Perfect as to
all other Attributes, if others there be. Perfect
in those, He must be Perfect in the rest, if they
exist. The Holiest One must be Perfect in
all mental Excellencies : Otherwise, an utter
incongruity would be introduced into the Divine
Economy, and the Godhead would enclose incon
sistent constituents. And to suppose any such
incongruity, or inconsistency, would be to entertain
the most extravagant absurdity.
27. By reason whereof, it is true that
236 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
Sublimity, and many other Excellencies, or modi
fications of Excellencies, are predicable of The
Mind of minds. The Self-Beautiful, He must be
also The Sublime, or, in other words, the super
eminently High and Lofty One.
28. Therefore, it is evinced that the Lord God,
as the Holiest One, is the All-Perfect Being. And
it was before demonstrated, that He is the Self-
Beautiful. 8 And so we shall formulate our
29. So, the Lord God, who is the Holiest One,
is, necessarily, the Self -Beautiful, and the All-
1. What Beauty is, or consists in? Whether
it resides in the object viewed, of whatever nature
be the object, when the object is called beautiful,
or in the mind beholding the beautiful object?
Holding that Beauty is limited to created things,
Whether beauty be an external quality of the
material object, or a purely internal feeling of the
percipient ? Or, partly the one, and partly the
other that is, a mixture of both ? All these, and
many more like questions, have been discussed,
each side, in every case, having had its devoted
2. In like manner, Beauty has been used in a
* Supra, 9, 20.
PROP. I.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 23r
very wide sense, and it has also been employed in
a very narrow sense of the term.
3. But it would appear, that, in whatever else
the various patrons and advocates of the several
opinions might differ, they all agree in one thing,
that, to wit, there is such a thing as Beauty, and
that it is perceivable. Wherever it resides, and
whatever it, in itself, be, there is yet the
beautiful, and beautiful things may be beheld.
4. From the preceding, it would seem that, if
possible, it is yet not easy, to define beauty, or to
tell precisely in what its essence consists. Is,
then, the question, What is Beauty in itself? or,
what is the Self-beautiful ? an insoluble question ?
A question interesting as having been raised so
pointedly by one of the majestic master-minds of
the world, the great poet-philosopher of all
antiquity. Shall men never be able to do more
than tell what things are beautiful ? or explain
certain circumstances about the beautiful things ?
To demand a strict logical definition of Beauty, or
The Beautiful, may be, after all, equal to the
demand, addressed to the faculty or power in us
which apprehends Beauty, to be answerable, for
the function of the power, to the dialectical and
linguistical faculties. And to translate its function
into their language, may be a request totally and
5. We have unquestionably, a power, or
238 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
powers, of some kind, by which we apprehend
Beauty : We may possibly not have ability to
describe, in or by means of words, what Beauty in
itself is, or in what the Self-beautiful consists.
Not everything is susceptible of being denned, or
described, by sound significant, or by any language
of any sort save that which appertains, as a
specialty, to the faculty which apprehends. The
truly beautiful is understood by a peculiar power
or susceptibility, or province of susceptibilities, of
the mind ; but it cannot, perhaps, be transmuted
into so many terms, the product of other, and quite
dissimilar, mental powers. Some things are too
simple, or too peculiar, to be capable of being
denoted by more words than one. Beauty is, or
may be, one of those things.
6. Nevertheless, it does appear to be the
case, that an approach, at least, to the solution of
the question, What is the Self-Beautiful ? has
really been made in the foregoing demonstration.
Even supposing Moral Excellency, as existing in
the Mind over all minds, be not a pure synonym,
or an exact equipollent, for The Beautiful in itself,
the former words do yet, at any rate, come very
near to being equivalents for the latter. The
Moral Excellency of the Lord God, is the Self-
Beautiful ; and the Beautiful in Itself, is the Moral
Excellency of the Supreme : this is true, or, at all
events, it would be extremely difficult to shew it
PROP. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 239
to be untrue. And from those equivalent positions,
many derivative truths, of great pith and moment,
do follow. As to which it would be exceedingly
advantageous to treat, in due time and place.
The Lord God, ivho is the Self -Beautiful, and
the All-Perfect Being, is necessarily the Ever-
1. As an affair of language, the word Blessed
ness, when applied to the Supreme Spirit, has two
meanings, in the one or the other of which it may
be taken. First, it may denote consummate
Happiness; and, secondly, it may stand for
consummate Well-thought-of -ness, or Wc/t-xpoken-
of-ness. Exempli gratia, in certain writings, we
read of "the blessed God," and "the blessed and
only Potentate," where the word blessed occurs in
the sense of the happy God, or Potentate. In other
places, we meet with the word in the other sense,
and "the blessed," or "ever blessed God," is
another way of expressing, God who ought to be
ever well thought of, and well spoken of. In
Greek, the two meanings have two terms to express
them. Blessed, in the sense of Happy, is denoted
by MaK(ipio9, or, as applied to the Great Supreme,
O MKU|0/o?. While blessed, in the other sense,
240 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. Y.
that, namely, of being well thought of, is Ei/Ao^-roV,
or, O EJAo y^To?.
2. Xow, these two meanings, though covered
by one and the same English word, express things
not only distinguishable, but very different from
each other : as different from each other as the
two words would have appeared and been to a
3. The same discrimination in things, leading
to the same distinction of words, is to be seen
elsewhere. For instance, the same distinction in
terms is to be found in the Hebrew language. A
Hebrew, or Jew, said, in accordance with the
genius of his speech, Blessed is the man, when he
ascribed, or wished for, happiness, or fortunateness,
to the man, or wished, for him, that the blessedness
would be preserved and continue : the Jew using
the term Ashrey, oqJN. The Jew would never
think of saying, Blessed be God (Elohim), or the
Lord (Jehovah), using the word Ashrey. He would
assuredly employ, in this case, a different word. He
would say, Blessed be the Lord God, using Baruch
(TFTQ)- Of course, the latter word is used indiffer
ently of the Creator, and the creature : because the
creature, as well as the Creator, may lawfully be
the object of good wishes, or laudations. The
question is not whether both words may be applied
to the creature, but whether they may both be
applied to the Creator ; or, if both may be applied
PROP. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 241
to the Creator, whether both be applicable in the
4. CWld any thing point out more aptly than
does the circumstance to which our attention has
been directed, that these ancient languages, the
Hebrew and the Greek, are the providential (witli
your leave !) or the true i.e., fit and proper-
theological languages ? That, while we possess
only one word in our English tongue to express
such very different ideas, as the words "ntTN (0
the happiness !) and T^na (Blessed bo !) do
respectively denote, eacli of those languages had
two words to carry the two so differing meanings ;
is a circumstance well calculated to make us pause,
and meditate on the reasons, no less than on the
fitnesses, of things.
5. Modern Anthropologists have investigated
many subjects. But the relations of peoples, and
their languages, to their uses on the world-wide
theatre, would be one of the most advantageous
considerations which could enter into the matter
of Anthropological Science, or, at any rate, the
studies of Anthropologists.
6. In a previous part of this demonstration,
the complete Happiness of the Infinite Being was
demonstrated, a and we are come now to the place
where shall be demonstrated the Blessedness of
the Lord God in the other sense, the sense, to
a Div. III. Prop. i. 4. Vide, etiam, Prop. iii. Schol. n. 13.
242 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
wit, of necessary and consummate well-thought-
1. One difference, which strikes the very key
note of the distinction betwixt the two meanings
of the term Blessed in English, and the two words
corresponding thereto in Greek and Hebrew, is,
that we can with propriety say, May the Lord God
be blessed, or, Blessed for ever be His Name ; while
we could not say, without the grossest impropriety,
May He (continue to) be happy. That is, we dare
not employ the word blessed in this latter sense.
The expression, May the Supreme be happy for
ever, would convey that we, His creatures, could
be in some way witnesses, or at least expectants, of
an increase (by continuance) of the Happiness of
the Great Being ; while, indeed, that Happiness
admits not of the possibility of any increase, as it
is capable of no diminution, the Happiness being
as necessary as the very Being itself. In fine, it
is, and will always be, man s duty to say, May
He who is over all be blessed (eJAoy^ro ?.) But it
would be a near approach to blasphemy to express
a wish, or to wish, for a continuance or an increase
of that Happiness which is essential to the Deity.
An approach to blasphemy would certainly be made
by applying to the Divine Being the term blessed
in the sense of, Be thou happy.
PROP. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 243
2. Such being the state of the case, the road
to the manifestation of the truth of our Proposi
tion lies quite patent. Can any ons doubt, if it
were but for a moment, that the Being to whom
we must ascribe all the previously expressed
Attributes, Excellencies, Perfections, ought to be
well thought of, and well spoken of? Can the
Infinite Being, who is necessarily All-Knowing,
All-Powerful, entirely Free, completely Happy,
perfectly Good, True, Faithful, Just and
Righteous, All-Loving, each of these predicates
being taken in the widest sense, the Wisest of
Beings, of ineffable Moral Purity, and the Holiest
One, who is also the Self-Beautiful, yea, the All-
Perfect Being ; can that Being be otherwise than
well thought of? Well thought of, if we think of
things as they are, and should, and must, be, and
not as they are not, and cannot be ? Unless,
indeed, we be false ourselves, it is impossible the
affair could be otherwise. Only a person whose
faculties, and whole powers of mind, are in a
condition of mental disorder utter moral wreck,
and ruin, and confounded chaos where all is equally
dire confusion, only such could withhold the
tribute of his best thoughts as due to the Supreme,
or ascribe to Him any (even implied) evil or imper
fection, by wish of heart, or thought of mind.
3. As their bounden duty, men ought to give
praise and glorification to Him who is over all,
244 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
who made them, and sustains them in beinsj. with
* O 7
all the blessings present and prospective of their
being. To wish any addition of Happiness to such
a One, would be, at bottom, to look at things as
they are not, and deny to that Supreme the posses
sion of that which is His inalienably. His, by
actual possession and by right, from the very
necessity of the thing. How much more, therefore,
would any denial, in a worse form, be intolerable,
since even the wish of an addition to the Essential
Happiness would be so flaringly and flagrantly
wrong, and in opposition to the eternal fitnesses of
4. So very evident, indeed, is the truth and
propriety of the predicate in our Proposition, that
it is extremely difficult to keep from a certain air
of sermonizing in delivering the media of our
thesis. Topics so plain are apt to look like mere
platitudes. That the All-Perfect Being is worthy
of all praise, and honour, and glory not only
from us, but from all creatures gifted with
Intellectual and Moral properties themselves ; is as
clear a truth as can be entertained by us. Only
minds in a state of perversion, and hideous collapse,
that can see things (not as they are, but) as they
are not, could refuse to ascribe glory to their
Maker, could decline to say, Blessed be He !
5. But tis of little use discussing what a
perverted mind can be or do. For certain it is
PROP. II.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 245
that every Moral Intelligence, as such, must say,
and be always ready to say, Blessed be God the
Lord ! Yea, most true is it, that, as the question
concerns the innate propriety and truth of things
themselves, we may pronounce unhesitatingly that
tis a necessary supposition that the Mind of minds
must attribute to Itself Ever Blessedness. How
could it be otherwise ? As long as Moral Excel
lencies, closed up in All-Perfectness, be as they
are, so long must a corresponding absolutely
universal Glorification a, Be Ever Blessed ! be
due to, and not to be withheld from, the Being of
beings, the All-Perfect.
G. One element remains, and the truth to be
pointed to, if not unfolded, is one which is true of
created minds, as well as it is true of the Uncreated
Mind, the ground and direct fount of all other
Intelligence. Blessedness is beyond Happiness,
even Happiness the greatest that can be. The
former is more interior, more profound, and also
more extensive and comprehensive, than the
latter. Happiness, if itself a strictly Moral (in
contradistinction from an Intellectual) Attribute,
does not at least include, or involve, by any
necessity of ideas, the remainder of the Moral
Attributes. But the Blessedness involves, and
distinctly and directly includes them all. Hence
the Blessedness is, in truth, a Transcendent
Attribute, being super-eminently above the Happi-
246 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [Div. V.
ness, the existence of which was demonstrated as
constituting the step intermediate between the
Intellectual and Absolute, and the Moral and
Relative Modes of Being. In fine, the Blessedness
contains within it the Happiness, and the former
exceeds and excels and supremely transcends the
latter ; even as the mightiest of constellations may
be imagined to surpass in magnificence the real
glory of a single brilliant star in that vast and
most glorious assemblage of stars of all magnitudes.
Only by virtue of the isolation, the individual star
is a tiny object. A multitude of stars, no one
greater than it, raises the host unto the dignity
of a constellation, with its incalculable proportions.
7. Therefore, in the affirmation, that the Lord
God, who is the Self-Beautiful, and the All-Perfect
Being, is necessarily the Ever-Blessed One ; there
is a most true and righteous alliance between the
subject and the predicate : and we cannot but
8. And, thus, the Lord God, who is the Self-
Beautiful, and the All-Perfect Being, is, necessarily,
the Ever Blessed One.
GEN.SCHOL.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 247
THE GENERAL SCHOLIUM.
1. From the very nature of the case, matter,
be it much or little, which has been gone over
elsewhere, will fall to be introduced in this place ;
and the student ought to be prepared rather for
the application of truths advanced already, than
for the appearance of considerations fresh in every
point of view.
2. As this concluding Scholium shall be partly,
and indeed mainly, occupied with an application
of the positions advanced and proved in the
different Propositions of our discourse ; so, it will
be extremely proper to begin with a survey of the
various positions themselves, these being now all
held as so many established points. The survey
shall be made to be as short as possible an
epitome, in sooth, as succinct as shall be compatible
3. We shall exhibit, then, a summary of the
truths established in the foregoing demonstration,
holding them all as being beyond the reach of
question ; and, afterwards, it shall be our business
to make a certain application of the truths held as
248 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [GEN. SCHOL.
SUMMARY OF POSITIONS IN THE DEMONSTRATION.
(1.) There is necessarily existent One most
Simple Being of Infinity of Extension or Expansion,
and Infinity of Duration. a
(2.) And Matter, under any aspect of it, is not
that Being. On the contrary, Matter has inherent
qualities and capabilities, inseparable from it, which
are inconsistent with the idea, and the actual
possibility, of its being other than finite in
extension and finite in duration. b Thus, it began
sometime to be.
(3.) The Being of Infinity of Expansion, and
Duration, is a Spirit, that is, an Infinite Spirit : c
which, being so, is everywhere, and of absolute
immensity. Therefore, It penetrates all matter,
and every existence of whatever kind, in the most
intimate manner/ 1
(4.) Advancing to the Intellectual Attributes, it
is seen that the Infinite Spirit is All-Knowing ; c
and It knoweth, therefore, every thing in every
point in the universe of matter, or of the pure
space beyond the same. f It also knoweth every
thing from the beginning to the end of time ; yea,
a Div. I. b Div. I. Part i. Sub-Prop., & Part ii. Sub-Prop.
c Div. I. Part i. Sub-Schol., & Part iii. Prop. in. Schol.
ll Div. I. Part i. Gen. Schol. and Sub-Schol.
Div. II. Part i. f Div. I. Parti. Sub-Prop. Dem. 6.
SUMMARY.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 249
everything in the duration itself beyond or before
the world, or ere the material universe was, falls
within the range of the knowledge of that Infinite
(5.) It is also Ail-Powerful, able to do all
possible things, or every thing involving no internal
inconsistency : no contradiction, impossibility, or
(6.) The Infinite Spirit is, moreover, entirely
Free : It is the Free Spirit, being Free in the truest
sense of the term. Being beyond the reach of the
power, or influence in any way, of aught outward,
extraneous, or foreign to Itself in any possible
respect, It is truly Free. Being alone, in such
regards, It is The Free Spirit.
It behoves the contained to be, if co-eval with,
not more ancient than the continent. The whole
Material Universe having had a beginning : Man,
therefore, had an absolute commencement ; and of
the race of man the Being in question is the most
Free Creator. 1
(7.) The Infinite Spirit is possessed not merely
of the Intellectual Attributes: It possesses the
strictly Moral Attributes likewise/ First of all, It
is completely, or supremely, Happy. It is of
essential Happiness : Happy in Itself, and by and
a Div. II. Tart i. Dem. g 4. Div. II. Part ii. c Div. II. Part iii.
l /6irf. Schol. Div. II. * Div. III. s Div. III. Prop. i.
250 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [GEN. SCHOL.
(8.) Being essentially Happy, the Infinite Spirit
is also perfectly Good. It is Good contemplatively,
or passively : and Good actively, and with regard
to Its creatures, especially the Intellectual and
Moral creatures, formed after the pattern of Itself,
the Exemplar, or, in Its own image and likeness.*
(9.) The Infinite Spirit, or God, b is now to be
regarded as in relation to His c moral intelligent
creatures. God, therefore, is the True, d and the
(10.) He is, moreover, of inflexible Justice in
His actings and dealings with his creatures/ And,
ascending to the fount of Justice itself, He is the
altogether Righteous. 5
(11.) God is, also, the All-Loving, yea, Love
itself. 11 And being so, suffering and misery, on
the part of His creatures, are doomed to final
extinction, extinction total and everlastingly. 1
(12.) The simple, or uncompounded, Attributes
being exhausted, the complex Attributes enter the
field of vision. And under this head, it is made
apparent that God, the Lord, j is the Wisest of
a Div. 1,11. Prop. i. Sub-Prop., & Schol.
b Div. Ill Sub-Div. ii. Schol. Prsepos. I.
c Ibid. Schol. Prsepos. n. h Div. III. Prop. iv.
(1 Div. III. Prop. ii. i Ibid. Schol. HI.
c Div. III. Coroll. from Prop. ii. i Div. IV. Schol. Prsepos.
Div. III. Prop. iii. k Div. IV. Prop. i.
Coroll, from same.
APPLICATION.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 251
(13.) He is, moreover, of ineffable Moral
(14.) And God the Lord is also the Holiest
One. b Before whom, as the All-Holy, sin cannot
persistently exist through all the ages of ages.
(15.) Finally, a transition to the Transcendent
Excellencies being effected, the Lord God, the All-
Holy, is the Self-Beautiful, and the All-Perfect
(16.) And being so, He is the Ever-Blessed
And blessed be His Name, for ever and ever !
5. After the preceding brief, yet perhaps ex
haustive Summary, the reader will be prepared for
the observations which shall be advanced in the
way of application of the same.
APPLICATION OF THE SUMMARY OF POSITIONS IN THE
(a.) There is a Being of Infinity of Expansion
and Duration, and this Being is Immaterial. Now,
this Immaterial Substance and Mind, this thinking
Spirit, penetrates intimately all things. It per
meates me, since nought is exccpted.
a Div. IV. Prop. ii. a Div. V. Prop. i.
b Div. IV. Prop. iii. u Div. V. Prop. ii.
c Div. IV. Prop. iii. Schol. ir.
252 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [GEN. SCHOL.
(fr.) In truth, this Infinite Spirit, being every
where, and of true immensity, passes through, most
intimately permeating, all matter, and every thing.
It passes through me my body, my soul, my
spirit. I do not see It ; nor touch It : but It
touches me, and perceives me better than I do
myself. It knows all my thoughts : there is never
a thought in my heart but It knows it altogether.
(c.) The Infinite Spirit created all things. The
worlds were framed by Its Word for, there was
no created medium, nor any other possible medium,
before creation was, except the Word, or Fiat, of
the Infinite Substance itself. The things which
are seen, were not made of phenomenal visibles.
That Infinite Spirit, therefore, is the cause of my
being ; and on It I do continually depend for my
(d.) All-Knowing, the Infinite One knows all
my thoughts, yea, understands them afar off.
This Being, who so understands me, doth also
love me, since He preserves me from day to day.
He sustains my life, and, in fact, I am dependent
on Him in every breath I draw, and for all my
blessings. I could not be more dependent,
physically, or naturally, than I am. He wills, and
I live, and live on : And He has but to will,
and I should return to absolute nothingness,
being utterly ignored and forgotten thenceforth as
a living existence by every mind in the universe.
APPLICATION.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 253
Yea, the Spirit on whom all things depend has
only not to will has only to cease to will my
continued existence, and my being would be as if
it had never been.
(e.) Being thus so wholly dependent, what
follows ? To Him, my Creator, my Conserver, on
whom I every moment depend for life, and breath,
and all things, my unceasing thanks, my gratitude,
my warmest love, my universal homage, are due.
If I do not acknowledge, by such feelings, the
relation subsisting between me, the creature, and
Him, the Creator, and Conservator, and Bounteous
Author of all my good, I am virtually a living
liar denying, so far as I can deny, the fact and
reality of the relation which does exist, and the
existence of which is unobliteratable. In with
holding the thanks which are so absolutely due, I
am seeking, desperately, to involve the True and
the False, the Good and the Bad, in chaotic
disorder, tending to the obliteration of all distinc
tions in essences, and even of all substantive things
(/) Wherefore, with regard to Him in whom we
live, and move, and are, the Being- of being-s, the
* O O
Mind of minds, the Cause of causes, certain
indispensable duties are due, and the tribute of our
fullest homage is owing, and our obligations are
incapable of being set aside except criminally,
and most vainly. Being the offspring of God, and
254 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [GEN. SCHOL.
depending on Him continually, and without inter
mission, for all things, it is but becoming in us to
acknowledge the truth of the case, by acting
according to the true fitnesses of things : our
acknowledgement being with the accompaniment
of the suitable and most harmoniously allied
emotions. The sense of utter dependence on the
Creator and Sustainer of all creaturely existence,
the veneration, and intense worship due from the
creature to the Creator, boundless gratitude from
the obliged to the Great Benefactor, the fullest
reverence and love, in short, on account of all the
benefits we are ever receiving from Him on whom
we depend for every blessing, yea, even the
minutest bestowment of well-being : these are the
feelings which ought to have the fullest possession
of our minds.
(g.) To withhold, to the smallest extent, or in
the slightest degree, the expression of such feelings,
were to act in a manner subversive of the order
actually existing, and appointed for the subsistence
and well-being of the Universe : a manner clean
contrary to the true relations and adaptations of
things to each other. Tis plain, indeed, that to
act contrary to the relations in question, would be
equal to a denial of the facts of the case, and the
truth of things. That to the Lord God, the King
of kings, and Lord of lords, the ascription, by the
Intellectual and Moral creatures, of all praise, and
APPLICATION.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 255
honour, and glory, is due ; is as certain as any
truth whatever. That the intensest homage of
the creature to the Creator, is a fit, and decorous
tiling ; is a truth as certain (and it ought to be as
evident) as that to the sum or multiple of 2 & 2
belongs an equality to 4 as a totality : and one
might as rationally and naturally deny the
existence of the latter (intellectual) relation, as
that of the former (moral) relation.
(h.) If one thing be more clear than another, as
the result of the foregoing Summary, and indeed
of the whole demonstration itself, it is the truth
that we are the offspring of God the Lord, the All-
Perfect One, and that He is our Father.
(/.) The Fatherhood, indeed, of the Absolute
One, and First Cause, the Fatherhood as in
relation to us, the creatures, as simply men, has
no doubt been denied. But the denial is either
improper, or, being proper, the premises from
which the conclusion follows, must be very
different from ours.
(j.) For, given the premises afforded by this
whole demonstration, it is unquestionable that One
is our Father, our Father bein^ the Creator of
heaven and earth, and all things therein.
(k.) No doubt, there are necessary supposita, in
order to the conclusion that God is the Father of
256 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [GEN. SCHOL.
men a.s men. Certain essential conditions must
(/.) First of all, if man be the child of God, it is
involved that in God there be not only the first
principles of masculineness ; but also the first
principles of feminity must be in the Godhead
likewise. How otherwise could God have off
spring ? How could the human race, as male and
female, be in the image and likeness of God, unless
in God, the Exemplar, there be principles corre
sponding ? Unless there be in the Exemplar the
first principles of motherhood, as well as of father
hood, how could the result be a race which, as male
and female, is in the likeness and image of the
Exemplar ? And here the special observations
connected with the feminine principle in Deity,
and with the all-sexualness of the Lord God, are to
be referred to as being in point, and of absolute
service in the establishment of the doctrine. a
(m.) In the second place, it is necessary, in the
view of God the Lord being regarded as our Father,
that man should be considered as made, or framed,
after the image and likeness of the same Lord God
( not only in the respect already alluded to but)
as to the possession of , complete Intellectual and
Moral nature ; there being, in short, in God the
Lord, Attributes corresponding to all the radical,
a Vide, supra, Div. III. Prop. iv. Schol. in. 3 ; & Div. IV. Prop. ii.
APPLICATION.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 257
inalienable faculties, and all the as indispensable
emotional susceptibilities, of man s nature. It need
scarcely be said, that, in the course of the forego
ing Propositions, this essential is seen to be most
(n.) Man, then, is the offspring of God the Lord,
in respect that man resembles his Maker in being
male and female in one one at first (androgyn-
ally,) as he shall be one at last, and for eternity,
and as being in possession of a full complement
of intellectual faculties, and moral susceptibilities,
the product of the very Substance of the Divine
(o.) The consideration of the principle of the
Fatherhood, is highly requisite in order to the
ethical completeness and perfection of our vision of
God the Lord. Until we can look at, and do
appeal to, God the Lord as our Father our Father,
although lie be our Father in the heavens we
cannot regard Him with those affectionate warm
feelings without which continual filial approach
unto Him will never be made, without which
approach at all is all but utterly impossible. But
God, the Lord, once regarded as our Father, and
what should hinder His child from lowlily yet
passionately urging his need of the Divine
(p.) The Lord God, as Judge of all the universe
of mind, may be seen seated on the throne of His
258 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [GEN. SCHOL.
glory : but the Lord God, the inexorable Judge, to
whom, indeed, as the Doer of the Right, innocent
angels might look up without fear, is the same
Bcino: who must look down on man, the fallen, the
guilty, only with abhorrence at his sin. But the
same Lord God, seated on His throne as our
merciful Father, who knoweth not only our needs
but our frailties, pitieth us, well knowing our
frames, and remembering that we are but dust.
The throne of judgment has become a throne of
grace. In one word, the Lord God, as the judge,
will be dreaded by guilty man ; while the same
Lord God, as our Father in heaven, will be
anxiously sought after by weak man, His sorrowful
and sorrowing child, borne to trouble, throughout
his few days, even as the sparks fly upward.
THEREFORE, the whole course of these reasonings,
as a connected and consecutive complete discourse,
can have but one proper and becoming ending.
We do hang upon God the Lord, and it is
incumbent on us, as a duty to which we are
righteously obliged, to give expression to our
absolute dependence, acknowledging also the just
consequences of that relation between Him ivho
is over all, and us the creatures of yesterday.
WHEREFORE, and as taught by the %>ositions in
that unimpugnable demonstration, as our immove-
able ground, we do pray in the ivords of this
PRAYER.] THE UEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 259
R FATHER who fillcst all space, and art
everywhere present, who, nevertheless, dost
manifest Thyself, in a more glorious manner, in
certain regions, to those spirits, angels and saints,
and saints and angels joined in one, that are
likest unto Thyself, who, therefore, dwellest in
the heavens : Who, inhabiting eternity, art from
everlasting to everlasting Unto Thee, Our
Father, do we come, that Thou mayest assist our
mortal weakness, and aid us, defective in every
good quality, while we farther pray unto Thee,
May Thy Name be Hallowed by us, even as
Thou art Blessed, and to be Blessed for ever more
by all creatures, especially by those whom Thou
hast made like unto Thyself by their possession
of Reason and Conscience.
May Thy Kingdom come, even Thy Kingdom
governed and regulated by the laws of unchanging
Righteousness, and Love, and universal Holiness,
and may it prevail on earth even as it exists in
Thy immediate presence in heaven ; so that over
all the earth men may love each other, and, loving
their neighbours as brethren, may so love and
serve Thee, in all lowliness of heart, yet with most
260 THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI, FOR [GEN. SCHOL.
May Thy Will, which is the only rule for the
heavenly inhabitants, become the rule of our lives,
who live on earth, that so living we may have,
even while here, an earnest and foretaste of the
exceeding great joy to be had in Thy celestial
And seeing that we do hang so intimately on
Thee, Lord God, our heavenly Father,
Give us, according to our need, the things that
are requisite, as for our bodies, so for our souls and
spirits : Give us, in particular, this day bread
convenient for us food to sustain our natural
lives, and nourishment and quickening for our real
selves, our minds ; so that our affections may
become more and more set upon things which are
above, where is the True Good and the First
And, seeing that in all things we offend, and do
come short of the requirements of Thy most Holy
and Perfect Law, forgive Thou us all our trespasses
against Thee, and also against our brother whom
we have seen, so that, forgiving our brother his
trespasses against us, we do hope for Thy forgive
ness of us who have so much more grievously
trespassed against Thee.
And may we, w r ho are so weak and so frail, not
be led into temptation : but if, in the course of
the dispensations of Thy wise yet at present
inscrutable Providence, w r e be tempted and tried,
PRATER.] THE BEING AND THE ATTRIBUTES. 2G1
do Thou deliver us, so that we be not utterly
enclosed in the snares of that Evil One who gave
beginning to all the evil which is in this world by
sin, and throughout Thy universe. Evil cannot
be save in an evil mind ; and we beseech Thee,
Lord our God, deliver us, Thy sons, from him
who is only evil, being the father of it. Amen, and
Now, unto Him, who is able to keep us from
falling into that condemnation, that so, and at
the last, we may be presented faultless before His
glorious presence, with exceeding joy : even unto
the Only Lord God, who is from everlasting, be
glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now
and ever. Amen.
Yea, Blessed, and for ever Blessed, be His Name.
AND the responsive chorus, Loth old and new,
and for ever, of the Church on earth, ix :
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION.
IN offering a Sixth Edition of " The Argument,
apriori" to the reflective public, a few remarks, and
only a few, are requisite 011 the part of the author.
The present edition, then, differs from the preced
ing one in this, that a Fifth Division, and indeed
department generally, has been entirely added ;
while throughout the pre-existent portions some
slight alterations have been made. These, however,
being quite unessential and unimportant, do not
require specific notice and attention. Some inac
curacies, too, in expression have been rectified : but
why should such improvements be carefully
chronicled ? The great difference, therefore, will be
seen to consist in the new Division, containing " The
Transcendent Excellencies ; " not to omit mention of
the concluding portion, "The General Scholium," a
piece having equal reference to each Division of
No doubt, the inquirers who have honoured the
former edition with good heed may be taken by
surprise, seeing that they looked at the book before
them as containing the true and proper conclusion
of the affair. And without dispute, " with the de
monstration of the cumulative attribute of Holiness,
a veritable culminating point" was attained. a But
the student is called on to observe, at the same time,
that it was nowhere said, that the demonstration
was finished in every sense, or according to the idea
of it in its author s mind the immediate archetypal
repository. There was nevertheless no cunning dis
played in hiding a matter, or, else, the cunning was
nearly allied to wisdom. The truth is this : A
provision was made against possible eventualities.
Not a scornful covenant with death : only, a covenant
with oneself against death. In case the author had
not lived to finish the " Argument," as it existed in
idea in his mind, and as he had actually sketched
the plan years before, the demonstration as it stands
in the print of the 5th edition would have been the
finale : and, indeed, therein a just ending had been
reached, and no one (unless gifted with a preter-
naturally acute eye) might have seen that yet there
was room a desideratum to be, if possible,
But the demonstration is now ended, ended in
accordance with the preconceived idea, and the
actual plan drawn out years ago, viz., at the time
a Preface to 5th edition.
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION. 265
the course of " The Argument, a priori, for the
Moral Attributes of God," was laid down. a Now,
therefore, there is a full end of "The Argument,
a priori" A full end, in one sense ; although (it
is confidently trusted) there will never be a full
end in another sense, of peculiarly evil signification.
While the ages roll on, this Argument will exist,
for it is founded upon a rock which cannot be
moved. It shall continue as long as this sun : and
when it shall cease to operate on men s minds, it
shall be another sun than ours which shall shine
even that sun, with healing in its beams, which
shall endure throughout all generations, and beyond
With regard to the new Division of our Argu
ment, with its Transcendent Excellencies, may
that be found to be true the like of which happened
in the case of that eminent man who is declared by
so many to be Germany s greatest author. May
the Division in question be its own revelator ; even
as the famous spire of the Cathedral of Strasbourg
(ill-fated city !) became a self-revealer to Goethe s
sensitive eye. " After gazing in admiration upon
the Minster of Strasbourg, Goethe perceived at
length, or thought he perceived, that the tower
arising above the magnificent pile was incomplete.
On mentioning this to a friend, his friend replied,
a Tlie plan was sketched in 18G4, the year before the publication of
the work designated in the text.
Who told you so ? The tower itself, said Goethe ;
I have observed it so long and so attentively, and
have shewn it so much affection, that it at last
resolved to make me this open confession." And
then from among the archives of the Cathedral, the
original sketch, shewing the incompleteness by the
completeness, was referred to, and Goethe had
been right. a So, the secret that an additional
height was awanting, may be revealed by the
Transcendent Excellencies themselves. There may
be a talebearer to reveal secrets at present ; as well
as there had been a faithful spirit to conceal the
matter. In fine, tis trusted that the thoughtful
reader, with Division V. before him, will perceive
that, without these Transcendent Excellencies, the
demonstration would have been incomplete ; or (to
state the matter otherwise) with the addition of
them, the course of the reasonings is duly com
pleted, so that there is now existent a finished
performance wanting nothing, and coming to its
natural and proper ending.
But although the new portion makes the demou-
a The instructive anecdote is set down as it was given in the
"Journal of Sacred Literature" for January-March, 1855, then edited
by the Rev. Dr H. Burgess. The anecdote occurs in the course of an
able and generous criticism of "The Necessary Existence of God," as
set fortli in the Torbanehill edition. The Argument, as it existed at
that time, suggested, by a self-revelation, its own incompleteness.
Proof, going farther than Goodness, was desiderated ; and with much
reason was the desideratum perceived, and sought to be supplied.
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION. 267
stration complete and perfect in every way, yet tis
true that the demonstration, as it closed in the
previous edition, had " a veritable culminating
point " of its own. It was closed up in a proof of
the Universal Holiness, and no ordinary reader
could have perceived any deficiency, far less
desiderated a whole additional Division. And it
may be a matter of serious question, whether, even
yet, the demonstration, as it ends in that fifth
edition, be not more adapted for Atheists, and
Infidels generally, than the present edition, with
its distinct and peculiar addition, can be. The
Transcendent Excellencies are so exceedingly
unadapted, and in all ways unsuited, to the state
of mind in which a professed Atheist, or Antitheist,
may be expected to be found, that the likelihood is,
that the handling of these Excellencies before such
will only provoke outbursts of the most dreadfully
appalling blasphemies. Such might be the effect.
Doubtless, an Atheist, or Antitheist, may scoff, and
scorn, and blaspheme at large, in the most horrid
manner, with the previous exhibition of the
Attributes before him. Tis true ; and pity tis,
tis true. The monstrous jests, and the hideous
store of lewd sneers, and all the rest of the obscene
and frightful outcome of the nethermost pande
monium, may proceed against a proof ending with
the Holiness of the Lord God. But still the
blasphemies may be more and greater when those
Transcendent Excellencies are presented addition
ally. In fact, these afford peculiarly the pabulum
on which an impure imagination astride on a per
verted mind might delight to dwell, in order to
profane, with the besotted ribaldry, the supremely
holy things of the Church the more privileged
peculium of believers, and the assembly of the
saints universally. We err and sin by casting our
pearls before the swine, since thereby a more
abominable filthiness is occasioned than comes from
the trampling by the brutes upon their more
It may be (we advisedly say) a serious question :
and, accordingly, the Fifth Edition shall, henceforth,
be reckoned the edition peculiarly adapted for the
Atheists in perfect accord, indeed, this determina
tion with the special purpose indicated in the Preface
thereto ; while the new edition shall be deemed the
appropriate heritage of the Theists, and believers
generally. The one shall be called, the Atheists
edition ; while the other shall have, for its distinctive
title, the Theists own edition. The former will
suffice to silence, if not to convince, the unbeliever
and the disbeliever, and such shall be its function.
The latter, again, will serve to confirm, and edify,
the mind of the honest inquirer, and introduce him,
it may be, into the splendours of a region unvisited,
or at least uninvestigated, before, to his increase of
joy, and measureless delight.
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION. 269
If this our demonstration be as it is commonly
admitted by its students to be an impregnable
logical construction : if it be, in truth, a demonstra
tion equal to a mathematical certainty (as it is
confidently declared a to be :) mark what follows,
with regard to various classes of persons.
In the first place, all Atheists, and Infidels, must
keep silence in presence of the proof. If the
unbelievers and disbelievers would proceed to work
logically, they must be speechless to be in order.
If they cannot refute this demonstration of the
existence of a Holy Lord God, they must at least
hold their tongues. To be allowed, by a logical
licence, to speak, they must open their mouths
only to refute the reasonings of the Argument.
Failing their ability to do so, they must preserve
unbroken silence before the men of the Church.
There is another class of the Infidel public, who
before men call themselves men of Science, but who,
in reality, are secretly unbelievers. With regard,
therefore, to the secretly infidel among the men
of Science (unbelievers are they, though seldom
a A voice from a far-oil island in the Atlantic, has recently made
such a declaration. The individual who utters the voice is a genuinely
zealous student of true philosophy, although he writes from the
distant and isolated Newfoundland ; and, far away though he is from
the great centres of thought, he has yet, in one of the periodicals
of Modern Athens, challenged contradiction of the statement, that
the Argument, a priori, "has demonstrated, to a mathematical
certainty, the necessary existence and attributes of God."
disbelievers) there is a word, in season, to be
Our gentlemen, then, of Science, of each one and
all of the Physical Sciences, must allow the applica
tion to themselves of their own great dictum, That
each distinct science, and, much more, every great
department in science, has its own rules, valid for
itself, and effective for its own internal regulation ;
and these rules are not to be meddled with, far less
impugned, in a high-handed way, or by any short
cut, or indirect method, by any theologian, or by
any person whatever, be his science or philosophy
what it may. Mineralogy might be given as an
example of a single science ; and Geology might be
adduced as representing a whole class of sciences,
such as Botany, Comparative Anatomy, Chemistry,
and even Mineralogy itself. The former is a science,
while the latter stands for a departmental collection
of sciences. Now, as touching the rule in view, the
validity thereof shall by no means be called in
question in this place. Far from it : for the rule,
held as settled, shall be founded on for a good
reason of our own.
If, then, it has been demonstrated and the affir
mation we go by is, that it has been demonstrated
that the Material Universe is finitely extended, and
is of finite duration, a or began sometime to be ; our
a See "Argument, a priori:" Div. I. part ii. Sub-Prop., in connec
tion with Sub-Prop, in Part i.
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION. 271
men of science cannot l>e permitted to pooh ! pooh !
the demonstration. Thev must meet it on its own
ground, and there controvert it, and overturn it, or
they must grant it. They dare not controvert
it, simply because they are men of science ; nor
dare they by any side wind seem to blow it away :
because their own rule forbids them to do so.
Their own grand doctrine is, that every distinct
science, or philosophy, such as Theism, or group of
separate sciences, such as Theology, has its own
rules and method, for which it is answerable to
the representatives of no other sciences, nor set of
This being so, and it has been settled and fixed
for ever by the Physical Philosophers themselves
that it is so, our scientific gentlemen must look
the matter fairly in the face. It is a position
regarding that Material Universe which affords the
basis for all their experiments and observations,
inductions and generalisations, which is on the
tapis ; and the logical and metaphysical proof,
touching the non-eternity of Matter, being before
them in a legitimate mode, it cannot be kicked
contemptuously aside or away. As Chemists, as
Anatomists, as Zoologists, as Geologists, as Astro
nomers, as what not ? the Natural Philosophers
cannot object their sciences as being, per se, a
sufficient opposing force to that demonstration by
the metaphysical Theist : and no man of Science can
lawfully travel out of his province, and away from
the straight path before him, to start an objection
incidentally, or by the way, while he is making an
excursion in an irregular cross road. The objection
must be directed to and against the demonstration
itself. If it be drawn only from the particular
pursuit of the Savant, it cannot be but futile, and
vain, and, as being not in point, it must be
dropped altogether. In a word, a man of science,
any one physical science, cannot, as being simply
a man of science, oppose a demonstration of Theism,
since Theism is itself a Science, yea (when the
truth is told) the Science of Sciences. For Theism
being true, all the sciences must hold of it : It,
in turn, holding of none. Of the sciences, in fine,
Theism is the true head and chief, as well as the
crown and glory.
The affirmation, therefore, is, that it has been
demonstrated, demonstrated in the very strictest
sense, that Matter, finite in extension, is also finite in
duration ; and so it began to be. Or, you may say,
it had an absolute beginning. Geologists may dig
and grope, and better grope, for centuries, yea, for
millenniums, in the bowels of the earth : they may,
in the course of countless ages, break down, and
reduce to powder, and smallest dust, every handful
of the crust of the earth : but there will still be
one thing which the Geologists (taken as represent
ing the men of science in general) cannot do.
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION. 273
Keeping within their own province, they cannot
interfere with the rigorous metaphysical and theist-
ical proof, that Nature herself had an actual
commencement. The matter of the world had an
absolute beginning. It was created, having before
had no existence whatever, except in the thoughts
Should, however, any members of the Scientific
world, in love with philosophy beyond the bounds
of their proper sphere, be disposed to go out of
their own province for a time, to meet, fairly and
face to face, the Theists on their own domain,
then, the demonstration itself of the true non-
eternity of matter will be the subject of discussion.
And so be it. And God defend the right.
Even the most cursory reader of the " Argument,
a priori," will perceive that, between the first part
and the last part, there is a vast difference in style,
in a certain weighty respect. The difference may
be characterised, in few words, by saying, that, while
the early portions contain few Moral and Religious
terms (as they may be called), the later portions
contain many such words, and indeed they may be
said to abound with them.
It is quite true, that such a difference exists ; and
some of the causes of the difference have been
particularized in the Preface to the Fifth Edition.
But the reference therein is of a more limited
nature than that which we have under present
The early portion of the demonstration, ending
with the 3rd Part of Division II., is wholly taken
up with the consideration of the Infinite Being, and
the purely Intellectual Attributes ; with, in short,
the Being and the Attributes absolute. While,
with the Moral Attributes of Division III., begin
the relative Attributes ; and GOD is considered in
relation to Man. Here, therefore, Man is intro
duced upon the stage, and a perfectly different
course of treatment is the necessary result.
But, in addition, Moral Attributes involve dis
tinctively Moral handling. Hence, the introduction
of Moral words, or words answering to Moral ideas,
was unavoidable. The necessity for the use of such
words reached its climax when Holiness entered the
field of vision : All sorts of Moral and Eeligious
terms became then an absolute necessity of the situa
tion. And when the Division with the Transcendent
Excellencies was added, every sentence must be
loaded with suitable terms ; and although no defi
ciency in strict logic was permissible, there must
needs be a perfect redundancy of words correspond
ing to the Moral and Religious notions and emotions,
present through their symbols.
Any other course, even had it been a logical
possibility, would have been guilty of an immorality
chargeable against its very conception. It is an
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION. 275
offence against morality, no less than against good
taste, to treat a highly moral subject without a
sufficiency of words denoting the presence of highly
moral emotions : whilst it would be equally im
moral, though the immorality would be of a dif
ferent complexion, to treat a merely logical theme
by the interspersion of a crowd of Moral or Religious
epithets. To have introduced Moral and Religious
terms, and phrases, into the 1st Division, would
have been ridiculously out of character ; and to
have made the 4th and the last Divisions as
destitute of these as the first Division was, would
have been, less ludicrous indeed, but much more
offensive otherwise. The destitution of the highly
moral and religious words would have been an out
rage upon both Morality and Religion.
A late critic characterises the distinction in
view in a way not so far amiss when he writes :
"The whole of the earlier part of the treatise is
"the hardest, closest, most irrefragable argument
"we have seen for many a day, and, so far as we
"have discovered, without a single weak point.
" The later Divisions are looser in texture," &c. a
Such is the deliverance of one of the latest of my
One of my earliest critics, however, went much
farther, and, by one bound, he high over-leaped all
a " The Literary Churchman" for Feb. 4, 1871. It is the 5th edition
of " The Argument," which is under notice.
bound. Division III., with its Moral Attributes, has
as yet no existence. Only Divisions, I. and II.,
discussing the Being and the Natural Modes, and
O O 7
the Intellectual Attributes, had been produced.
What does the reader suppose that, in these circum
stances, a resolute theologist-reviewer did ? While
noticing that in the thin octavo before him (it was
the first edition) there was no attempt to demonstrate
the Moral Attributes, he adduces the circumstance,
that the proof, as it stood, had no terms indicative
of Moral and Religious emotions and ideas, as a proof
of a most serious transgression. Transgression of
what ? Not of the laws of logic. Not of those of
good taste. A transgression, however, of both the
theory and the practice of sermonizing, as sermons
commonly go among us. For your sermon-maker
is by no means nice, in general, with his adaptations
of words to subjects. His words may be quite
germane : or they may not. But we are not to
condemn the reviewer unheard for his own behoof.
He is criticising the original edition, and thus he
makes his charge : " It is to be regretted that Mr
" Gillespie has so entirely divested his argument
" of that moral colouring if we may be allowed
"the expression the presence of whose deep and
" solemn tinge, pervading every part of Dr [Samuel]
" Clarke s otherwise abstract demonstration, has
" always appeared to us one of the most interesting
"and singular circumstances connected with that
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION. 277
" masterly performance. In reading Dr Clarke s
" demonstration, one always feels the inherent
" grandeur and solemnity of the subject ; in reading
"Mr Gillespie s never." ["Never" is the word
in the original diatribe, as it appeared in the bi
monthly " Presbyterian Review : " but in the
volume of 1852, when the Torbanehill edition of
the " Necessary Existence of God " had been several
years published, the word "never" is changed into
" but partially and seldom."] " The treatise now
" before us might almost have been written by one
" originally and totally destitute of the moral senti-
" ments. The existence and attributes of the King
" Eternal, Immortal, and Invisible, whose name is
" Holy, are reasoned of here with the same passion-
" less apathy as if they were the properties of an
"arbitrary and cold abstraction, or as if the subject
" of discussion were a mere algebraical symbol.
" This we regard as a very serious defect ; so
"serious, indeed, that we can hardly imagine it
"capable of full and satisfactory justification," &c.
&c. a There is, in the article quoted from, more
of the same sort of stuff, which he who pleases may
turn to, if he be in search of excessively candid,
and more than ordinarily honest, moral colouring.
a The full title to the volume in question is : " Papers on Literary
and Philosophical Subjects ; including a Selection from Contributions
to various Periodicals." It was a means to an end. Soon after the
publication, the author was seated in a Professor s Chair.
In fine, the aim, throughout " The Argument,
a priori" has been, to produce a proof without there
being in it a single bad argument, or paralogism ;
a proof, moreover, where technical words, whether
nouns or adjectives, should never be significantly
employed until a right to the full and unfettered
use of them had been successfully established.
Hitherto, our view has been directed to the content
of this new, or sixth edition, considered as in and by
itself: but, before concluding these introductory
observations, it will be but proper to look at that
content, as it stands with reference to the contents
of another volume (the predecessor, in fact, of the
fifth edition of " The Argument ") to wit, " The
Necessary Existence of God." a In a word, attention
must now be bestowed upon the relation which the
volume entitled, " The Necessary Existence of God,"
bears to that having for its title, " The Argument,
a priori, for the Being and the Attributes of the
LORD GOD, the Absolute One, and First Cause."
This is the more necessary to be done in that a
misunderstanding about the matter is afloat. A
kind, no less than judicious, critic, for instance,
ventures to hope that "some of the treatises" of
the larger volume, the Necessary Existence, " will
not be allowed to pass out of print ; " and the
a It is right to notice that the edition of the work named in the
text, is the (stereotyped) Eussel edition of 1863, 1865.
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION. 279
reason assigned for the hope is, because " the
treatises possess such intrinsic worth." 11 Now, had
the real truth been fully known, or attended to, no
such fear need have been once entertained. There
is no danger of any of the treatises alluded to
passing into oblivion, by being allowed to go out
of print, because the smaller volume, the Argument
itself, has attained to perfect completion.
If we take the " Argument, a priori," as the
central figure of the group, we may discern that, of
its attendants, some are before it, while the others
go behind and after it. Or (to change the metaphor,
or rather drop metaphor altogether) let us take that
Argument as the organon itself. Then, we classify
the other pieces by the same author, on the same
general subject, as the ante-predicamenta, and the
Among the ante-predicamental monographs, we
may enumerate such pieces as these :
"Inquiry into the Defects of mere <l puf< ri<>ri
Arguments for a God."
" Reviews of the Demonstrations, by Mr Locke, Dr
Samuel Clarke, the Rev. Moses Lowinan, Bishop
Hamilton, and others, of the Existence and Attri
butes of A Deity."
" Necessary Existence implies Infinite Extension."
After the central piece, the organon itself (which,
u The not unsagacious critic has made the "Christian Ambassador
the vehicle for his ideas. See Number for February, 1871.
in the " Necessary Existence," is given in no larger
dimensions than it had in the eyes of the antitheists
of its early days) come the post-predicamentals.
Among which stands conspicuously, and so far as
the volume in question goes exclusively, indeed, the
"Examination of ANTITHEOS S Refutation of the
Argument, a priori, for the Being and Attributes
of God ; " with its various interspersed monographs,
and subsequent Appendix, containing monographic
essays of its own.
Among the interspersed separable treatises, are
" The non-infinite divisibility of Extension and of
" Of the sentiments of Philosophers concerning Space,"
Of the various pieces in the Appendices, some of
them are, in fact, as many distinguishable essays
on as many different topics.
Now, in this enumeration, as a whole, we have a
set of radically distinct treatises (greater and smaller)
which have, or may have, intrinsic claims on atten
tion ; and the claims of some of the treatises do
nowise depend, wholly, or even mainly, on the
"Argument" itself. Some of those treatise are, in
logical arrangement, which is the true equipollent of
the order of nature, introductory precursors to the
" Argument, a priori ; " and others fall, as evidently
or naturally, into their proper place when they are
made to come after that organon. In a General
Preface to the " Necessary Existence," a rationale
of the proper order, or the " relation to each other "
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION. 281
of " the various pieces " of that volume, is given ;
and it is shewn, that " they severally handle the
different departments of the subject." Without
dwelling farther on the topic in this place, we may
simply refer the reader to the rationale in question.
It extends to several pages.
But among the class of post-predicameutals, we
might, with great justice, put a production not
included in the volume which has been under notice.
The "Examination" of Antitheos was indeed "a
diffusion and defence of certain portions " a of the
" Argument : " and equally so was the production to
be adverted to. The production thus in question is,
generally speaking, the volume of the Debate between
ICONOCLAST a ml the present Author* which so far
as it contains letters and pieces emanating from the
author of the Argument may very fitly be classed
with the Examination of the work of the Antitheist.
Antitheos, with all his force, attacked the 3rd Pro
position of the Argument: Iconoclast attacked,
with all his might, the 1st Proposition of the same
demonstration ; although his predecessor, in the
autitheistic walk, had declared (what every man,
gifted with the usual complement of human intellec-
a See the General Preface, referred to previously.
h The title of the volume referred to in the text is," Atheism or
Theism ? Debate between Iconoclast, the accredited Champion of
British Atheists, and others, and William Honyman Gillespie, of
Torbauehill," &c. &C.-1870.
tual faculties, must unhesitatingly declare) that first
to be altogether unassailable. Both Atheists, how
ever, purposed to assault the " Argument " itself :
while, on the other hand, the author thereof defended
his demonstration (successfully, there can be no
doubt) against both assailants, thelatest assault being
repelled with as much good will as the earliest one
had been. In short, tis evident that both defences
fall to be ranged among the pieces which, in due
order, come after the organon itself. You cannot
defend a thing, until after it exists, and appears
The plain truth is, that the two volumes, "The
Necessary Existence," and " The Argument, a
priori," have a principle of vitality, each for itself,
and distinctly as regards the other. The two are
distinctively different. The one volume is mainly
taken up with the natural precursors, and with the
natural followers, of the organon. The other again
consists exclusively of the organon itself, pure and
simple. No need for the one to be the occasion of
the other s going out of existence, and being seen
no more in print. Rather, the life of the one
should be a guarantee for the continued existence
of the other. The prosperity of the organon, the
grand central figure, should make the company of
its congenial attendants desirable.
In a perfect arrangement of the different works,
the order would be this :
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION. 283
1st, The precursors of the Organon, or ante-predica-
2nd, The Organon itself; and
3rd, The post-predicamentals, or pure followers of
the Organon (like the Examination and the
Debate) as the close of the series.
And no one of the departments would tend to render
the other departments, or either of them, superfluous.
The reverse indeed : The one would naturally pave
the way for the other, or create, by a well-understood
law, a desire for the perusal of the rest.
THE A UTHOR OF
THE ARGUMENT, A PRIORI.
*** Tis evident, now, that the Fifth Edition and this Sixth
Edition are to be regarded as co-existent works, rather than as
publications successively put forth as candidates for public attention
and favour. The two editions are, to all intents and purposes,
-simultaneous productions : the one being for use against Atheists,
and disbelievers of all sorts ; and the other for the use of all
Theistic inquirers, desirous to have their own beliefs strengthened
and confirmed. The Theists will be edified by seeing, from their
peculiar sources, how truly unimpeachable, in every respect, is
their faith in the most vital of all truths. The highest and noblest
portions of the superstructure will be seen to be held to their
attachments by the most indissoluble ligatures and fastenings;
while the common foundations of the entire erection are them
selves iminoveably stable, and eternally secure.
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION.
THE present is the first complete edition of " The
Argument, a priori" or, the Argument as consist
ing of Divisions III. and IV., as well as of Divisions
I. and II. This is, in other words, the Argument
as embodying the whole of the Moral Attributes,
from Goodness onwards to Holiness, the apex of
the construction, as well as containing that preced
ing portion which may be regarded as the immut
able foundation and solid basement-story of the
whole edifice, however high it may be carried.
For true it is, that hitherto the demonstrations
for the Moral Attributes (corresponding generally
with Divisions III. and IV.) have been procurable
only in separate volumes, though the volumes were
but small. But to exhibit a brief historical survey
of things from the commencement : First of all,
there appeared, as the original demonstration, what
(barring alterations) is now comprised within the
limits of Divisions I. and II. No Greater were the
dimensions of that first edition of the Argument.
After a period of some length, during which the
work was, in various ways, much before the public,
and much too upon its trial in all respects, the
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION. 285
Propositions (relating to the Happiness and the
Goodness) represented by the 1st Sub-Division of
Division III., were added, and came out in the
Torbanehill edition (1843.) After, again, a much
longer interval, in which events of moment to the
fate of the demonstration were proceeding, the
Relative Moral Attributes, as corresponding with
the 2nd Sub-Division of Division III., were
published, in a little volume, by themselves (1865.)
Lastly, the Complex or Compound Moral Attributes,
comprehended in Division IV., were, in a minute
volume, given to the public in the beginning of this
year (1870.) Such has been the course of events,
and the progress of the demonstration to consolida
tion and completion.
From its very first appearance, the " Argument "
was doomed to meet with opposition of every kind
and variety, and from believer and unbeliever alike.
The opposition, however, from the side of believers
has become faint indeed. If conceited and obstrep
erous at first, it is quite hushed and subdued now.
It used to take the form of objection to the rele
vancy of the argumentation generally. At the
present time, the opposition on the part of Theists
is almost entirely limited to persons who, up to
this good hour, advance and advocate the superior
and exclusive claims of the rival a posteriori
method : these persons being a remnant of the
anatomical and physiological school of Paley, and
the Experimentalists, drawn from the various class
rooms of the Inductive Philosophers. Of proper
opposition, there is, in fact, but little now-a-days ;
and where the voice of objectors goes forth, the
echoes are but feeble, and the sound is remote and
unheeded. But however the diminished opposition
proceeding from Theistical quarters stands at this
present, our view, on this occasion, shall be confined
within the limits occupied by the Infidel objectors
In another quarter, 31 it has been my business to
record a survey, by epitome, of the operations
conducted by the opponents of the atheistical class
against the reasonings employed in the demon
stration treated of. With a view to the object
immediately before us, it will suffice to mention,
that the "Argument" had been no long time in
existence when it was assailed by an enemy to all
Theistical ratiocination, of whom it may be truth
fully said, that, on the side of the Atheists, his
equal in metaphysical and logical powers, and
general grasp of his subject, has not since arisen.
Yet even the celebrated " Antitheos " (for it is of
him I speak) was obliged to lower his ensign, by
virtually acknowledging overwhelming defeat at
his own weapons. After him, a shoal of small fry
sailed, in pursuit, in the wake of the offensive
a Debate, referred to below.
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION. 287
conqueror : but (as was to be expected) the puny
efforts availed but little, save only to keep up, and
support at a certain elevation, the interest by that
time created in the discussion.
For a dozen, or for perhaps a score, of years
after Antitheos s day, the Atheists of the East, no
less than of the West, and of the South as well as
the North, tried to find a weak spot in the coat-of-
inail endued by the author of the "Argument":
but an unprotected joint in the armour became
obvious to the eye of no atheist, how keenly soever
he might peer. All the scrutiny was in vain. The
reader will understand that it is of the " Argu
ment," as it originally stood (or Divisions I. and
II.,) that these assertions are made. But the
original portion is the essential.
With regard to the succeeding portion, being
that corresponding with the 2nd Sub-Division of
Division III. (comprised in the publication of
18C5;) it has been pronounced, by a not incom
petent student, to constitute " a course of severe
reasoning, as strict, indeed, as that of Euclid."
("Laws of Thought," 1868.)
In fine, it may safely be prophesied, that, as the
Atheists have not hitherto been able to agree as to
any one vulnerable point in the whole demonstra
tion ; so, they will never be able to lay their
fingers on a single place where is any radical
fallacy. The atheist being yet to be born, will
therefore never be born, who will succeed in
discovering the defenceless and indefensible spot.
Should it be objected, that the atheists, until
comparatively lately, have had to do only with the
early part of the entire ratiocination ; the reply
to be made lies ready at hand : the portion in
question is indubitably the back-bone of the
structure, the rest being merely educed elonga
tions of the skeleton, or pure additions to the
great axis of the vertebral column. Or if we
sought to be more accurate in the conduct of the
comparison, the first might be represented by
the fixed skeleton generally ; the other portion
being likened unto the flesh and blood, and all
the outward adornments of the structure, as a
living organism, in all the glow of high health and
Finally, in relation to this topic : If, at this time
of day, atheistical opponents are less able (if diminu
tion in ability be possible) to refute the reasonings
of the "Argument" than they were at the first;
how impossible, how more than hopeless, now,
would be the adventure to overturn the founda
tions, or any of the essentials, of this demonstrative
construction ! The unabashed present Coryphaeus
of British Atheists has made it to be publicly
known and most palpable, that he is even more
unable than was his predecessor, the Champion of
the Scottish Atheists, to accomplish the feat of
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION. 289
overturning the reasonings of that demons! ration
which bars, and completely obstructs, the Athe
If the "Argument" has, in the Atheists, met
with foes from the beginning, the tables are turned
when the "Argument" is brought to bear directly
against the very head-quarters whence the chief
enemies must proceed. All this is but natural, and
what might well have been anticipated. A just
reckoning is sure to dog the steps of the enemies
of truth sooner or later. In a word, this Fifth
Edition is specially intended for Atheists, that is,
for use against Atheists. But this requires a more
There are contained herein passages which mio-ht
not have been introduced at all, but for the edition
having a direct and express relation to the case of
Atheists. For example, we may take the contents
of the Postulata, and a not unrelated Scholium,
under the Sub-Proposition attached to Proposition
iv., Part i., Division I. ; or we might instance in
the Scholium attached to Proposition L, Part iii.,
of the same Division, places introduced to meet
the methods adopted by certain ardent, yet hard-
pushed members of the existing atheistical host.
And, on the other hand, there are places where
additional matter might have been supplied, but
for its utter unfitness for use against aught so crass
a See second note below.
and coarse as the current Atheism : of which the
non-use of the doctrine of Spirituality, introduced
in the Sub-Scholium under the same Fourth Pro
position, may be given as a striking illustration.
That doctrine, confined as it may be said to be
within the boundaries of the 1st Division, might
have been used on a much more extensive scale
than has been actually adopted.
But farther. Whereas Dr Samuel Clarke wrote
his justly celebrated Demonstration "more par
ticularly in answer to Hobbes, Spinoza, and their
followers "- with a view, in other words, to special
schools of Atheists, or the special phases of Atheism
at that era most prevalent ; the present production
has reference, almost equal reference, to the case of
Atheists of another description. In truth, while
this production does most emphatically keep sight
of the present phases under which Atheism chooses
to present itself, it is yet adapted and addressed to
the case of every species of possible Atheism. This
demonstration is, no doubt, peculiarly applicable to
the method of arguing followed by the existing race
of Atheists. There is, of course, a common, or, at
any rate, a generally adopted road, in which the
bulk of the Atheists of our day are to be found
and this demonstration follows them into their fre
quented high-way. Every instructed man knows,
that our present Atheists are pure or, rather,
extremely gross Materialists, as they deny the
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION. 291
existence of any extension whatever separate from
Matter : they, however, add to their pure Material
ism a sort of Hylozoism, or doctrine of life apper
taining to matter as matter. They hold (somewhat
after the fashion of those ancients who belonged to
the school of Strato of Lampsacus), the doctrine of
the essential life of all Matter : Matter is the
gcnetrix and matrix of all particular or individual
things, whether substances or events.
But our demonstration is also, and equally,
applicable to the method of Atheists belonging to,
and claimable by other schools. It is thoroughly
applicable, for example, to the Atheism which
(with the doctrine of Democritus and Epicurus, as
expounded by Lucretius), admits of vacuum, or
pure space, as a distinct ab-original principle in
addition to matter, that is, its fundamental atoms,
or primordial corpuscles.
Notice must be taken of a certain great difference
which obtains between the early and the recent
portions of the demonstration. In the original,
and, in fact, in the early editions, the Scholia in
Divisions I. and II. were brief: while the Scholia
of the latter Divisions (we can hardly say, of the
later editions) are frequently long, some being
very much so. The Scholia, indeed, in Divisions
III. and IV. are long, in relation to the attached
Demonstrations, as well as compared with the
earlier Scholia. One reason is easily given : The
earlier Scholia concern the Being whose Existence
is in course of being proved ; while the later
Scholia have much to do with Man and his con
cerns. In the former case, the simplicity of the
Great Being treated of seems to transfer itself into
the argumentation about Him : In the latter case,
which is man s, the reflection of the entanglements
and the disorderliness of his affairs seems to be
diffused and transfused through all the reasonings.
The truth about the Being of beings, as He is in
Himself, is simple, and capable of being clearly
stated in few words. But with Man s entrance on
the stage, a complicated and confused state of
affairs is superinduced, and, by comparison, a
deluge of words (which you may perhaps accept
as a modest redundancy of language) becomes
necessary, and requires to be excused. Sometimes
words pour down upon the reader avalanche-like :
nor can the torrent be avoided. The difference,
in fine, is inevitable, since it arises from the nature
of the case.
We may adopt another method of bringing out
the same result, wherein the points of contact with
the preceding exhibition will be sufficiently
obvious. In Divisions I. and II. , the great
substratal Substance is viewed or His Modes are
viewed as Absolute, as well as Simple. But in
the subsequent portion of the piece, the Attributes,
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION. 293
become Moral, are at length directly Relative, and
they come to be, at last, Complex or Compound.
Now, tis plain, that the elucidation of the subject
of Relative and Complex Attributes, can by no
means be trajected in so unelaborate a way as that
sufficient for the handling of the Simple and
Absolute Modes. The very circumstance of the
relativity necessitates and enforces a more involved,
intricate, and perplexed method of treatment.
Another matter, connected with the same topic,
is worthy of even more consideration. In this
Argument, the demonstrations themselves are the
weighty things : all else is, comparatively speak
ing, quite subordinate and unimportant. If the
Demonstrations fail if, in truth, any one of the
main Demonstrations be not infallible, all goes for
nothing. If they are all infallible, all is right.
An ordinary Scholium is but an application some
inference or other drawn from the proof itself: and
an error in the application of a demonstration
would by no means invalidate the piece, in the
way in which a radical flaw in the demonstrative
part itself would do.
Pertinent instances might be easily produced to
illustrate the position regarding the relative
importance of a demonstration and a scholium,
when compared with each other, whereby it would
be very visible that the whole might remain intact
and perfect although the application in the
Scholium were allowed to be renounced as invalid,
while, at the same time, to make an acknow
ledgment of the illegitimacy of the proof in the
Demonstration would have the effect of bringing
down the entire edifice. The demonstration, as a
whole, would fail at that point. Though all going
before had been logically proved, and consequently
were quite valid, yet at that precise point the
demonstration, alas ! would give way, and break
down. On the other hand, again, if the proof at
the place indicated be unassailable, or at any rate
indestructible, no mighty harm would ensue
although a succeeding scholium should contain an
inaccuracy. But the reader can without difficulty
look up examples for himself ; and it may be taken
for granted, that no one can fail to see the superior
weight attributable to the Demonstrations over
their attached Scholia. A demonstration must be
irrefragable : a scholium, however, may be faulty in
deducing a certain inference, without at all damag
ing the connected proof containing the imagined
inference sought to be drawn and applied.
Tis quite true, that all such special questions
as are treated of in the long Scholia might have been
left out of our consideration altogether. A demon
stration, a full and perfect demonstration, of a
God, would remain, in the absence of all such dis
cussions. To be particular : Twere quite possible
to complete the construction of an a priori
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION. 295
argument containing a reference to the Moral
Attributes, even the whole of the Moral Attributes,
without entering upon any discussion of the
Rewards and the Punishments of the Future
(the subject of our Scholium in. Prop, iii., as well
as Scholium in., Proposition iv., both in Division
III.) But to give the complete go-by to that
topic, or any such topic, were to omit the
topic of perhaps the greatest human interest of
nil in this whole inquiry. To say nothing of
never-ending blessedness, what subject can vie,
in true importance, and absorbing interest to
man, with the subject of the possible eternity
of mortal anguish in insupportable torments ?
And, in point of fact, what theological inquiry
is at present so all-engrossing ? This topic
has attached to it, in sooth, the very greatest
human interest of all in this whole enquiry.
Not, indeed, the inquiry concerning the Being and
the Attributes, but that more limited one which
concerns the Moral region of the Attributes. No\v ?
an a priori argument which omitted topics of the
deepest interest would be of too dry a character
to invite the attention of the most of mankind.
There might be all the essential fixities of the
structure : each individual permanent of a perfect
skeleton might be present : But, after all, the bones
would be dry bones. " Rather the skeleton of an
argument," to use the words of a certain Professor
of Moral Philosophy, " than anything entitled to
be considered as a full and finished perform-
The following passages are taken from the
" Advertisement " prefixed to the publication of
1865, and from the "Preface to Division IV.;"
with but few, and unimportant variations. There
will be perceived, ho\vever, several places which
touch on ground traversed already. But the
repetition will not be found to be to any consider
An attempt to demonstrate, in the strictest way,
the Moral Attributes of God unlike attempts to
demonstrate generally the Being and the Attributes
had never been made before, or, if made, had
certainly failed, since, of a surety, no a priori
proof of those attributes is familiar to the world.
The attempt was, therefore, a most difficult one.
It is true, that Dr Samuel Clarke, in the 12th
and last of the Propositions of his celebrated
"Demonstration," endeavours to reach the Moral
Attributes : but the great Rector of St. James s
deals with the " Infinite Goodness, Justice, and
Truth, and all other Moral Perfections," in that
a The words quoted in the text, are from the Review of the
original "Argument, a priori," by the late Professor Patrick C.
Macdougall, of the chair of Moral Philosophy in the University of
Edinburgh. The Review was published in the Professor s
permanent volume of his " Papers on Literary and Philosophical
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION. 297
one Proposition, and, in a great measure, in
cumulo. The author of the Demonstration does
not treat these Moral Attributes as I have done,
namely, by making each of them, one by one, in a
proper order, the subject of a distinct cl priori
proof, in a Proposition devoted to itself. What
that famous author did was, therefore, quite
different from that which I have now attempted.
My attempt was of a vastly more difficult nature.
Besides, Dr. Clarke never once essays to intro
duce such an attribute as Lore. An attribute
Scripturally revealed, and thought to be so
peculiarly the deliverance of Revelation that no
endeavour had been made to attach it to Natural
Religion by any of its modes of proof.
In fact, with reference to, not only Love, but
Moral Purity, a main ingredient and element in
Universal Holiness, not one of these Attributes
was ever brought into the field of view by that
great author in his famous Demonstration.
The preceding observations are for the most
part from the Advertisement already spoken of.
The alterations are few, but it must be confessed
that there is an addition.
The following, again, is from the Preface to
Division IV. The reader will perceive, no doubt,
that there is some iteration to be encountered.
But it is hoped that the offences of this kind will
be of a nature easily pardonable, and really deserv
ing to be condoned.
As is patent, this piece is but a continuation of a
previous work ; in truth, of previous works. Tis
also not unentitled to be regarded in the light of
last ivords, since, with the demonstration of the
cumulative attribute of Holiness, a veritable
culminating point is attained.
The production of which a portion is now pre
sented to the reader, is not the first attempt at
a priori argumentation on the peculiar subject,
which the world has seen. By no means : there
have been many endeavours of the kind. But one
thing may be boasted of by the present author, and
tis this, that, while Dr Samuel Clarke (who
possibly was not singular) aimed at demonstrating
the Moral Attributes, in, however, a certain brief
and agglomerating manner ; among those he
specified, even in his cursory way, were no such
Attributes as "Love," and "Moral Purity," and
" Holiness." This production, therefore, is peculiar,
inasmuch as it has distinct demonstrations for
Moral Attributes which no previous author ever
thought, or even dreamed, of proving in a
demonstrative manner : while, with regard to other
Attributes, there are here full and separate proofs,
where before there were only brief allusions, in the
course of a general proof, by no means lengthy as
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION. 299
;i whole. In short, in this our work are to be met
with tilings unattempted yet in prose.
This may not be the very best place to magnify
the importance of a work of this kind, on supposi
tion (as generally conceded, or contended for, by
the professional theologians) that the attempt at
irrefragable proof has been successful. Still, it
may, not inappositely, be noticed, that our age is
unquestionably infidel, and even atheistical, in
tendency. The highest philosophy, and the
exactest science, alike, on the one hand, and, on
the other, the lowest literature, and the loosest
pseudo science, are equally set against any true
recognition of a Righteous Moral Governor of the
world, the Supreme Source of all human lights,
and the Final Cause to which all mundane things
must infallibly tend, whether men like or no.
Again, the whole of Religion, speculative and
practical, rests on the one foundation of Theism ;
and the sole root-doctrine of Theism is, There is a
God. If this doctrine be satisfactorily established,
and be firmly settled in men s minds, the solid basis
of Religion is laid, and the superstructure may be
advanced to completion. But if the doctrine be
insecurely made out, or be generally deemed to be
so, the interests of Religion at large cannot be on a
safe and proper footing, and the ranks of Infidelity
may be expected to increase still more rapidly, in
accordance with the spirit of the times. The days on
which we are fallen are unquestionably evil, and
evil they will continue to be, and they will be
increasingly evil, unless men can point to some
proof which believers shall hail as a true demon
stration of the truth of their faith ; while the
unbelievers seek in vain to demolish the edifice
which, rising step by step, all rests upon a founda
tion which cannot be shaken far less, removed, or
to the slightest extent displaced.
These remarks apply, or their spirit applies, with
double force to a strictly logical proof of the Moral
Attributes. A Supreme Being such as is imagined
by some Deists, is one thing : A Supreme Judge
who, executing righteous judgment, will assuredly
reward the good, and punish the evil, exactly
according to merits and demerits ; this is quite a
different existence, and one which the immoral man
cannot but be most averse to in his inmost heart.
Neither is this the very best place to magnify
our demonstration as a relative thing : If our
method be good in itself, tis perfectly obvious that
it is vastly superior to the rival method. To
magnify the virtues of a strict deductive proof, by
vindicating its vast superiority over the claims of
the other plan, even allowing this latter to be all
that its patrons can legitimately claim it to be ; is
not the proper business on this occasion. Nor are
we in search of a contrivance by which, if we do
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION. 301
not perceive a lawful road, we can at least make a
cimning though arduous cutting through the
unsuitable and, indeed, intractable middle region.
No : the superiority of the one method to the
other, is no such occult matter, nor so difficult to
understand, that we need to force the topic
unseasonably on attention. Suffice it to say at
this present, that there is evidently a fast-growing
disposition on the part of theologians to desert the
mere a posteriori way, and come over to the
dialectical domain where the a priori method is
regnant. None know so well how unfit the
a posteriori argument is for the exigencies of these
days in which we live, as do those who have tried
to use the method in encounters with skilled
atheists. The atheists, indeed, contemn the method
now in view, to the very point of holding it in
contempt, as a weapon calculated to affect their
position : and, of a truth, the argument derived
from the beautiful and majestic works of Nature
draws none of its glory from its adaptation to the
case of atheists. On the other hand, according to
the admissions of the atheists themselves, they
have not, up to the present moment, been able to
bring forward a single good argument in opposition
to "The Argument, a priori:" that is, there is no
common consent, nor any approach to a common
consent, among our atheists as to any one good
objection valid against the demonstration in ques-
tion. So far from any valid objection, of universal
acceptation, having been worked out, there is the
strongest evidence that no one objection is recog
nised save by its own creator, and elaborator,
and advocate. Having endeavoured, for more
than a score of years, to adduce undoubtedly
valid objections against that demonstration, the
atheists have, in their latest efforts, gone to
lop-o-erheads with each other about which of
them has failed most egregiously. Who has
done most harm to the common atheistic cause
by the ill-directed blows against the impreg
nable rock-built citadel ? this is the bitter com
plain t. a
One thing may be apt to strike the student of
the present performance ; and, in sooth, it has
forcibly struck its author. The conclusions arrived
at by virtue of the most rigid and rigorous reason
ings, are in wonderfully exact accordance with the
intuitional discoveries of the Prophets of the East,
made thousands of years ago. The seers of the
segregate Hebrew people uttered truths appertaining
to the higher planes of the Moral, where the Moral
and the Religious are blended together in one, such
as no Gentile philosopher, not even a Plato, nor an
Aristotle, nor a Zeno, ever found out, or even so
much as approached. Whether those surpassing
a See the "Debate" between Iconoclast and W. H. G., (1869), and,
specially, the Address prefixed to Division II. thereof.
PREFACE TO THE FIFTH EDITION. 303
ethical and theistical discoveries were made by
reason of a supernatural elevation of the spirit into
a sphere transcending the ordinary human sphere,
or by reason of more purely human intuitions, in
open vision : this is not a point for us, and for this
place. Those intuitions were of the grandest
nature, however they were come by. But our point
is this, that, derive the discoveries of the Israelitish
and Jewish Seers from what source you choose to
fix on, the discovered truths are mighty facts, and
are in astonishingly close conformity with the
conclusions reached by our perfectly independent
a jiriori reasonings. The truths promulgated by
the " prophets old " of that Shemitic people, and
the truths attained by so much labour of brain, and
cast abroad in the present hour, ARE ONE. Japliel
can do no better yet than dwell in the abodes of
Sham : and well will it be, if there be full content
ment with an ordinance which there is no passing
Finally, in an advertisement prefixed to the
Fourth, or Russet, Edition of " The Necessary
Existence of God," (1863), it was said : " I wish
" I could mention, here, (or any where,) that I am
" quite ready to publish the full results of my much
"pondering on the proper ultimate form for the
" strict a priori determination of the great Moral
Attributes of JUSTICE, or RIGHTEOUSNESS, and of
" HOLINESS. " a The strong desire, imparted to the
public in that expressed wish, synchronising with a
wail of the heart, (for there was^ undoubtedly such,)
has, at length, been accomplished. The great
Moral Attribute of Justice was demonstrated, and
the demonstration was published, several years
ago ; and now the great, and, if possible, greater
Attribute of Holiness is demonstrated too. After
the aspirations, and heart-yearnings, of so many
weary waiting years, the years have fulfilled their
course : the star of hope has risen above the
horizon, and, after a happy ascension, it is to be
beheld now in the zenith. There is no question of
any arguing with any atheist here, and most
unfeiguedly do I say,
Too Qeci) <Joct.
W. H. G.
a The wish of the text had been transferred from the Torbanehill
edition, where, however, the aspiration might have had no very
articulate expression. Sub-Auditur, it was heard as an indispensable
ground-tone. By no means the first time wishes and expressions to
the same effect had found vent.
LORIMER AND CHALMERS, PRINTERS, EDINBURGH.